Vigil held for 2-year-old shot, killed

Laylah Washington (Source: GoFundMe)
Laylah Washington (Source: GoFundMe)

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - A manhunt is underway for the four people responsible for the shooting death of a 2-year-old girl. As authorities continue to search for those responsible, loved ones and the community gathered Thursday night to remember the little girl.

Laylah Washington was shot in the head Sunday as she sat in the back of her mother's car. The little girl died Wednesday at Le Bonheur Children's Hospital.

A vigil to celebrate the 2-year-old's life was held Thursday night at 7 p.m. in the parking lot of Subway near Winchester Road and Kirby Parkway. Although an emotional vigil, it was uplifting because those who attended sent a clear message that the violence has to stop and those responsible need to be caught.

The vigil was held in the parking lot where the suspects allegedly started following the family's car after Laylah's parents yelled at them to drive safely. The family is trying to stay positive in the face of unspeakable tragedy.

The place where Laylah was shot was filled with princess balloons, pink butterfly wings, and Rest In Peace candles.

"It's basically been like one big nightmare," aunt Stephanie Washington said. "If you've got any information about what happened to my niece, you need to speak now, don't hold it in."

Meanwhile, police continue to question people but have not made any arrests yet.

MPD's first priority is to find the four men who were inside a black Impala. They are also looking for the people who were in a red Mustang believed to be associated with the shooters.

The drivers of both the Impala and Mustang were driving recklessly together before the men in the Impala allegedly shot and killed Washington.

That manhunt and the vehicle information is what led to a red Mustang being pulled over on Interstate 240 at Lamar Avenue on Wednesday evening. Later, however, it was determined to be a false alarm.

Now, Washington's family pleads for the public's help.

"I beg you. If you know something come forward to ease my sister's heart and, of course, to ease ours," Laylah's uncle, Terry Washington, said.

Family members set up a GoFundMe for Laylah Washington "to allow time for healing for her mother and to show Laylah is loved by the community."

The goal for 'Love for Laylah' is $2,000.

The family said they have already felt the love of the community.

"Everywhere I go, people stopping me, my coworkers, even people I don't know, they come up hugging me," Washington said. "The only good thing that came out of this whole situation for me, God got his angel."

Laylah's funeral will be held next Saturday, June 24, at noon at MJ Ford funeral home on Florida Avenue and Parkway Avenue.

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