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Daughter of Kroger shooting victim works to combat hate

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Posted at 2:18 PM, Sep 05, 2019

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE 3) — The daughter of one of two people killed in the October 2018 shooting at a Louisville area Kroger is sharing her story in hopes of preventing future hate-fueled attacks.

The 2018 shooting is being prosecuted as a hate crime after the alleged white gunman shot and killed two black people at the store including a 69-year-old man shopping with his grandson.

Speaking to a small group at Louisville's Frazier History Museum on Wednesday night, Kellie Watson continued her crusade against attacks like the one that devastated her family.

"We are still suffering. To say that I'm through it would be wrong, " Kellie Watson said as she spoke to the group as WAVE3 News' cameras were rolling.

Watson's son was 12-years-old last October shopping for a school project at Kroger with his grandfather, Maurice Stallard, when a gunman opened fire. Stallard was killed along with another shopper, Vicki Lee Jones. According to WAVE 3, Watson claims in a lawsuit, filed on her son's behalf, that the gunman pointed his gun at her child, but the gun didn't fire.

Now, with her father gone and her son's life forever changed by the shooting, Watson is opening up about how her family talks about this type of violence.

"What we do on a daily basis, not just he and I, but the rest of my family, is live life because my father lived life, " Watson told the group.

She was joined by leaders from different races, faiths and sexual orientations, all of them echoing her call to stand up against hate, and offering their thoughts on how to make the world a more understanding place.

"This is the time that we need to reach out to each other. We need to know the story of our fellow human beings, and we need to put ourselves in their shoes, " Dr. Muhammad Babar, a leader with the Muslim Americans for Compassion, said.