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Stolen Lives tour remembers those lost in officer-involved shootings

Posted at 8:30 PM, Nov 19, 2016
and last updated 2016-11-19 21:26:21-05

CINCINNATI -- Anternitia O'Neal said she will never stop fighting for justice for her late son.

Dontez O’Neal was 19 years old when he was shot and killed by Cincinnati Police Officer Orlando Smith in an undercover drug bust in 2012.  O’Neal’s mother says the shooting was unjustified.

O’Neal is one of many parents involved in the National Stolen Lives Families Tour, a network that travels around the country to different sites where individuals were killed in officer-involved shootings.

The tour group stopped in Cincinnati Saturday afternoon to visit the shooting site of John Crawford III, a 22-year-old man who was shot and killed in 2014 inside of the Beavercreek WalMart after he had picked up an air rifle off the shelf at the store.

RELATED: Family of man killed in Beavercreek shooting to sue police

Tour organizer Rev. Jerome McCorry said he wants family members who have lost a loved one to know that they are not alone.

"It was important for us to begin to bring families together for the purpose of being supportive to one another… this tour is simply not about the business of bashing police,” McCorry said. “We hope the conditions get better."

Yolanda McNair, of Detroit, was among the tour members in Cincinnati.

"The strength is in numbers,” McNair said. “People pay attention when they hear many people saying, ‘Hey that's not right.’ If someone's hurting, I know that pain. I know I'll make my way to them if I can."

McNair brought five other family members to Cincinnati, including Kimberly Griffin, who lost her son in 2015.

"It hurts, and it's a pain that will never go away,” Griffin said. “Every day I wake up just like the other parents here -- first thing we think about is that baby that's not there."