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Pastor calls for period of mourning after Deonn Carter’s death

Pastor Chase Welch, his wife, Somer Welch, and Deonn Carter. The church meets every Sunday at the Cunningham Center at Columbus State University.
Pastor Chase Welch, his wife, Somer Welch, and Deonn Carter. The church meets every Sunday at the Cunningham Center at Columbus State University. Courtesy of Facebook

The death of Deonn Carter, a school bus crash, and a Harris County car wreck that killed two brothers have inspired a local pastor to call for a period of mourning in the community.

Pastor Chase Welch, of Love Revolution Church, where Carter was a deacon, said he began the campaign at midnight on Tuesday. He’s asking for a five-day moratorium on shootings and robberies, which will end Monday at 7 a.m.

Welch said he’s hoping the “cease fire-cease robberies” campaign will lead to less crime in the future.

“If we can go one day, we can go two days,” he said during an interview with the Ledger-Enquirer. “And if we can go two days, we can go three days. And if we can go five days, we can do that every week. “

“But the most important reason is to give the community time to mourn and heal from all the tragedies that are taking place,” he said. “From all the police officers that I’ve seen come over the last three weeks, you can tell they’re doing a great job and they’re strong. But you can see it in their eyes that they’re tired. …They’re dealing with so much right now.”

Welch said he has also been to Midtown Medical Center and St. Francis Hospital to visit Carter and sick church members, and he has noticed fatigue among healthcare workers, too.

Carter, a friend of local police officers, fire fighters and other public servants, died Saturday at Midtown Medical Center, 11 days after he was shot during an armed robbery attempt outside of the Parkside at Britt David Apartments on Armour Road.

A preliminary autopsy determined that the cause of death was deep vein thrombosis due to a gunshot wound, according to Muscogee County Coroner Buddy Bryan.

Carter’s funeral will be held 1 p.m. today at Cascade Hills Church, 727 54th St.

The Muscogee County School District bus crash occurred Monday morning, killing Roy Newman, 67. Seven students, all attending Matthews Elementary School, were on the bus that crashed on Garrett Road. They were hospitalized along with Newman, who died a few hours later.

Newman’s funeral will be held 10 a.m. Saturday at Evangel Temple,5350 Veteran’s Parkway. Interment will be at Parkhill Cemetery. Visitation will be 4 to 6 p.m. today at McMullen Funeral Home,3874 Gentian Blvd.

In Harris County Reese Road Elementary School students, Richard Farrell, 8, and John Farrell, 7, were pronounced dead early Monday after the vehicle they were traveling in with their family and a family friend crashed in Cataula, Ga.

Welch said he hopes people will go to his Facebook page and listen to his videos, calling for the period of mourning.

Alva James-Johnson: 706-571-8521, @amjreporter