Local mother holds event one year later to honor son who survived shooting

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February 1, 2014 then 13-year-old DeAndre Knox was attending his first house party. It was there he was shot in the 3400 block of Aylesford Lane, on the city’s northwest side. Somebody fired gunshots into the house, and one of the shots hit Dre in the back of the head.

One year later, his mother held a special event to honor his fight to survive.

"It was just a vision I had in order to honor my son's one year of survival. They said he would live three days and today is his 365th day of surviving a traumatic brain injury," said Dre's mother, Deandra Yates.

Yates organized a youth 5 on 5 basketball tournament with a small entry fee for participants and vendors. The “Pray-4-Dre, Play-4-Dre” drew a crowd of more than 200 people. Some touched by violence themselves, others inspired by his story. Now 14-years-old Dre continues to recover at a rehabilitation hospital in Illinois.

"He's able to hold his head up more, he's feeding his self at least 7-10 bites without fatiguing out. He's standing without assistance for 30 minutes. May seem minute to some people but that's huge for us because they told me he would be a vegetable," said Yates.

Other mothers who loss their children to violence were also there to show support.

"We have formed a group called the mom's survivor group. And at times throughout the week I am having a bad day and I know I can pick up the phone and speak with those ladies," said Brenda Hill. Her son Reggie Hill, 20,  was murdered in 2013.

The event is also meant to continue building a network of parents and other family members whose children have been killed or seriously injured by gun violence. Yates says such support from other moms going through similar situations has proven invaluable in the last 11 months. She never expected the large turnout at Sunday's event.

"I'm overwhelmed. I haven't even got to take it in," said Yates.

Yates says money raised will help pay for funeral costs or other special expenses for families affected by violence.