Family: Slain father Xavier Shannon ‘lit up the room’

Xavier Shannon / Family photo

Xavier Shannon / Family photo

Homicide Watch Chicago

Xavier Shannon planned to spend a Sunday afternoon with family, celebrating his sister’s wedding anniversary, relatives said.

Shannon, 32, was shot to death just hours before the party.

He had three children: Jeremiah, 10; Xavion, 6; and Destiny, 5, and a stepson, 3-year-old Zion. His sister, Delores Franks, said he worked tirelessly for all four children.

Last year, Shannon worked three jobs to support his family — two as a security guard, and one in concessions at Soldier Field, family said. Shannon had just reached his one year anniversary at Kates Security.

He collapsed in his home from a minor stroke last year, and his mother made him quit all but one of the jobs so he could take care of himself, relatives said.

Shannon spent the extra time playing with his sons and caring for his children’s ailing grandparents, family said.

“He had to carry the grandmother up and down the stairs when she had appointments,” Franks said. “He did all of the grocery shopping, cashed their checks, paid the rent [and] has been doing this for about 10 years. I spoke with the grandparents the morning it happened and they are lost without him. He did everything for them.”

Xavier Shannon / Family photo

Xavier Shannon / Family photo

His mother, Jacquiline Shannon, said she was surprised that her son had so many friends. He kept in contact with people he met in elementary school and high school.

“He was a loving and caring person,” she said. “People liked him because he wasn’t a problem person. He treated everybody the same.”

His sister said she has spoken to at least 100 people since his death.

She said she last saw her brother on May 22, when the family gathered at her stepdaughter’s house to send her son to prom.

“He walked right in to my stepdaughter’s house and lit up the room,” she said. “He introduced himself as everyone’s cousin and had us all laughing within minutes … At her house we had more laughs because my brother is the shortest of my siblings and his niece and nephews, so we told short jokes. He just laughed it off and the kids went on their way.”

Two days later he was dead.

Authorities said Shannon was standing on a sidewalk in the 7900 block of South East End Avenue in the South Shore community when gunfire erupted about 12:30 a.m. May 24, authorities said.

Shannon, who lived on the block, was hit in the neck and died at the scene, according to the Cook County medical examiner’s office.

Another man was shot in the buttocks and took himself to Jackson Park Hospital, police said.

Nobody has been charged for the killing.

Area South detectives are investigating.

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