Stacey Wilson leaned against a pew, his back to his son’s open casket, and told family and friends a story about Javon as the gospel hymn “His Eye Is On the Sparrow” played over the church speakers Friday.
People Wilson did not know would frequently approach him to say they knew his son from going to school with him at Perspectives Charter School or from playing basketball.
“He was a special kid,” the grieving father said during visitation at the Hope Presbyterian Church at 61st and Loomis.
“He impacted lives.”
Javon Wilson, the 15-year-old grandson of U.S. Rep. Danny Davis, was fatally shot in his Englewood home on Nov. 18 following what authorities said was an argument over borrowed gym shoes.
On Friday, after first glimpsing Javon in his casket, Stacey Wilson walked back to his family and, through tears, said: “He looks like a grown man. He looks grown.”
Wilson would make several more trips to Javon’s casket throughout the visitation at the West Englewood church.
Dozens of Stacey Wilson’s friends, relatives and coworkers stopped by to offer condolences. The Rev. Jesse Jackson, former Ald. Bob Fioretti, Englewood District Commander Kenneth Johnson also attended.
Holding a Cubs hat and wearing a Barack Obama jacket, Davis arrived about 4:40 p.m. and gathered family members around the teen’s casket.
President Barack Obama, President-elect Donald Trump and Gov. Bruce Rauner were among the leaders who’ve called Davis to offer sympathies.
Davis said, though members of his family are still in “deep turmoil” and “filled with frustration and anxiety,” he hopes attention to his grandson’s murder will spur action.
“Every person that I’ve spoken with, every one of the leaders that I’ve spoken with have indicated that something must be done,” Davis said.
“We know what problems are. Problems of poverty, lack of educational opportunities, lack of job opportunities, parenting too soon,” Davis added.
Earlier this week, 16-year-old Tariq Harris and 17-year-old Dijae Banks were both charged as adults with first-degree murder in Javon’s death after turning themselves in.
Cook County judge James Brown said the two “pose a grave danger to the community” and showed “a clear and total callous disregard [for the] precious nature of human life.”
Both were held without bail.
“This is my son. I had plans with him for a long life, a prosperous life,” Wilson told reporters outside the visitation. “Have fun with him, teach him a lot of things, and just live life.”
Wilson said the circumstances that led up to Javon’s shooting were senseless.
“It didn’t make sense what happened,” he said. “Three lives are now gone, basically, because of nothing at all. Nonsense.”
“I need to be strong. I need to go on,” he said. “I have other children and I need to be strong for them.”
Javon’s wake and funeral services are scheduled for Saturday morning.