Today, Community Partners mourns the loss of Jer’nale Turner.
A client of CP, Jer’nale was working with Targeted Case Manager, Tuesdai Reed.
“At the time of his death, Jer’Nale was on the corner talking to one of the neighborhood mentors (also a former CP client) when a guy drove up and shot him,” Tuesdai said. “His mentor was laying on him as if he was trying to save his life and he lost his life too. A gunshot wound to the head. I knew both of them really well.”
Tuesdai was at the hospital with Jer’nale’s mother when doctors broke the news.
Despite doing everything they could, doctors could not save him and Jer’nale succumbed to his injuries. He was 17-years-old.
“Jer’nale was a good kid,” said his mother, Miranda Turner. “He was a special son. That one child who always wanted to be around his mother.”
This is the second time this year Mrs. Turner has to bury a child. Violence robbed her of her oldest son in February.
“He lost his brother six months ago and it was hard for him, but Jer’nale continued to be strong for his mother,” Mrs. Turner said.
There have been 26 shootings in West Palm Beach this summer – a majority of them concentrated in the Tamarind Avenue area – and Jer’nale’s death counts among the 62 homicides in Palm Beach County this year.
“This neighborhood is bleeding and it’s a crisis,” said City Commissioner Keith James.
As zip codes are an accurate indicator of both health outcomes and life expectancy, it is imperative that we do more to make our communities safer. The City of West Palm Beach is working with the mayor’s office, the police department and consultant Barbara Cheives to help unite the community through the Cops and Kids Summit. The initiative is geared towards pre-teen African-American boys and intends to provide an opportunity for honest and open dialogue between the youth and the city’s police force, thereby fostering a trusting relationship. The goal is to prevent and reduce youth violence and to improve the outcomes of African-American boys and young men.
“Community Partners is dedicated to joining our resources with residents, churches, police, local government and other partners to change our community,” said Community Partners CEO and President, Patrick McNamara. “The security and stability of our children is essential and we need to ensure that they are protected from abuse, neglect, trauma and violence. Their lives matter. Every life matters.”
“Jer’nale had a beautiful smile that lit up the room and filled your heart,” his mother said. “He will be missed and had a big impact on everyone he came into contact with. I love you, Jer’nale.”
To be taken in such a cruel way is devastating and Community Partners is offering grief counseling services to Jer’nale’s mother as well as starting a fund to help cover insurance and funeral expenses.
If you would like to help the Turner family, please email communications coordinator Jaime Joshi.
Rest in peace, Jer’Nale.