Family members and fellow cab drivers who knew 43-year-old Stuart Carson gathered in Jacksonville Beach Monday for his funeral. The father and husband was sitting in his cab on the Northside when he was shot and killed more than a week ago, police said.
His killer has still not been caught, and neither have the two men who stabbed a cab driver in another incident last week, just days after Carson was murdered.
Cab drivers in Jacksonville are part of a tight-knit working force, and many of them showed up for a special service for Carson, supporting his heartbroken family members.
Cab driver Marjorie Lari said Carson's murder and other recent attacks have made drivers rethink whom they pick up and where they are willing to go.
”That hurt everybody, and that's why we are going to support the family. That could happen to me,” Lari said. ”If I take somebody and my heart won't let me take it, I won't take them. If it's Northside, I won't go there. That's where people die on the Northside.”
Lari said she also knows cab driver Marcel Gilles, who was stabbed last Tuesday morning and nearly died. He said he was attacked by two men — one who was in the back seat, the other sitting right next to him.
“I just felt two knives,” Gilles recalled. “They pushed two knives in my neck, one on each side of my neck, and the guy pulled my shoulder to the chair with his arm with two knives in my neck.”
Gilles, 71, said he only had $17 in cash on him when he was robbed. He said he feels fortunate to be alive.
“While talking to me, the other guy is pushing the knives deeper and deeper into my neck, and blood spurted out everywhere,” Gilles said. “I said, 'Your holding my hand. At least release one of my hands so I can get the money and give it to you.'”
Gilles eventually fought off his attackers, even though he had two stab wounds in his neck that required a total of 70 stitches.