Minister laments death of nephew shot at Red Line station: ‘I’m hurting’

“How many times do we have to walk behind caskets of young black men before they realize that their deaths are a waste of talent and energy?” Rev. Zollie Webb wrote on Facebook.

SHARE Minister laments death of nephew shot at Red Line station: ‘I’m hurting’
Macksantino Webb was fatally shot Dec. 3, 2019, at the CTA’s Red Line station at Howard.

Macksantino Webb was fatally shot Dec. 3, 2019, at the CTA’s Red Line station at Howard.

Kevin Tanaka, Emmanuel Camarillo/ Sun-Times

Before Macksantino Webb was fatally shot Tuesday in a Red Line station on the North Side, he had moved in with a great uncle in Rogers Park to escape gun violence near his home in Englewood.

That uncle — Rev. Zollie Webb of Friendship Baptist Church in Evanston — said Thursday he was “hurting” and needed to tell “our young people ... that it is important they stop the violence.”

“How many times do we have to walk behind caskets of young black men before they realize that their deaths are a waste of talent and energy?” Zollie Webb wrote on Facebook.

Authorities say Macksantino Webb was inside the Howard CTA Red Line station about 12:20 p.m. Tuesday when someone approached him and fired shots.

Struck in the neck and chest, he went to the train platform, where paramedics tried to revive him. He died later at St. Francis Hospital in Evanston.

“My nephew was only 21 and had a 2-month-old baby girl that will never really know her father,” Zollie Webb wrote. “I am hurting to help plan his funeral and preach his final service and eulogy.”

Webb couldn’t be reached for comment this week. In a 2016 profile, Webb told the Sun-Times he began housing Macksantino and his brother over the summer after they witnessed the fatal shooting of their older cousin.

“Their mothers are hard-working single moms. Get them out of their neighborhoods — that was the goal,” Zollie Webb said at the time.

Their families rented an apartment for the teens, and Webb got a second apartment in his building. Macksantino got his first job with Bucktown Maid Service, which was owned by another relative, Tyrone Crowder.

But even then, they couldn’t completely escape.

“Their cousin, Ernest, came and made himself at home this summer,” Webb said then. “He would often do the chores the other two were supposed to do, and he helped me barbecue on the Fourth of July. A couple weeks later, he was shot and killed in Englewood.”

Ernest Hudson, 18, was shot in the head at 6450 S. Lowe Ave., about three blocks from his home, in July 2016.

Macksantino Webb had gone home that weekend because he missed his friends — and saw the shooting.

“Somebody just got to shooting out of nowhere,” he said then. “We’re taking cover under some bricks. Police came, like, 10 seconds later. Ernest had been shot in the head.

“I didn’t know what to do. We were together since grammar school. We used to always be at his house every day after school.”

That wasn’t the first time the brothers had been shot at. On Super Bowl Sunday in 2016, they were hanging out with friends and family when someone walked up and started shooting. At least four people were hit, including a cousin.

Following Tuesday’s shooting, officers arrested two people but released one soon after. Police announced a weapons charge Thursday against 18-year-old Michael Jackson in connection to the shooting, but did not charge him with Webb’s murder.

Crowder said Thursday night he’s in shock over the killing.

“All I could think was that this is the reality of a lot of young lives in Chicago,” he said, “and it’s why it was so critical for us to share with the Sun-Times in 2016 the struggle that so many black families in this city are involved in, just trying to save their sons.

“Many families are moving their children around the city, and it’s just getting to the point of, ‘Where, really, can you run?’ Nowhere is safe anymore.”

Crowder said Macksantino Webb’s fight to avoid a tragedy like this was “very real.”

“He was a teen with a big heart, and when he used to go on cleaning jobs with me, he worked very hard. Unfortunately, North Rogers Park turned out to be just as bad as Englewood; truly, you wouldn’t believe it. And the streets claimed him.”

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