It’s been nearly three years since Kalil McCoy was killed. The 20-year-old Andrew Jackson graduate was shot by her former friend after leaving Plush nightclub in Arlington in 2011.
The shooter, Frederick Wade, is serving life in prison for killing McCoy, and McCoy’s classmate, Jonathan Brooks, was sentenced to 15 years in jail for helping hide her body in a Talleyrand neighborhood. Two other men served less than a year as accomplices in the killing.
“In order to really move on, you have to forgive; you have to,” said Lynnette Roebuck, McCoy's mother.
That's the message Roebuck hopes to pass along to other mothers dealing with tragedy at a women's conference Friday. It's taken Roebuck almost three years to forgive Wade. She said she plans to visit him behind bars and tell him she forgives him.
"I've got to do it for me, so I can move on, because there are great things that God is doing for The Kalil McCoy Project,” Roebuck said. “And I'm not going to hinder it by holding all that anger inside."
Roebuck told Channel 4 that she has battled depression and gained a lot of weight since her daughter’s death.
“(I've been) really sick a lot, in the hospital a lot, a lot of things going on in my body because I wasn't able to release the pain and hurt that I had,” Roebuck said. “I kept that in."
McCoy's twin brother has found healing writing and performing music.
"I put it through my music and so people can hear my story and try to make it through,” said McCoy’s brother, Adil McCoy.
The family recently won a wrongful death lawsuit against Wade's family, and Roebuck is in the process of filing the same suit against the other three men in the SUV that day. She told Channel 4 that she's forgiven them, and she's hoping to encourage other women to do the same.
“We're walking on the same sidewalk, and all of us may not be walking in the same path, but we all share the same hurt,” Roebuck said.
The Women's Ministry is Friday at 7 p.m. at the Tabernacle International Deliverance Ministry at 3548 Gilmore St. in Jacksonville. The event is open to the public.
For more information, go to ttidm.org.