Jordan Davis would have turned 26 years old on Tuesday had the teenager not been robbed of his life in 2012 by a white man who said he felt “threatened” by the volume of the music being played in the car in which the teenager was a passenger. His mother, Georgia Rep. Lucy McBath, penned an emotional open letter to Jordan expressing her love for him and recounting all of the milestones he was unable to witness because he was “taken from us far too soon.”
McBath posted the letter on social media in a thread that included rarely seen family photos of the two of them from when he was a baby up until the months before he was killed at age 17 in Florida. He was shot to death at a gas station in Jacksonville when 45-year-old Michael Dunn opened fire into the car he was sitting in with friends after Dunn complained about how loudly music was being played.
Dunn was given a sentence of life in prison without parole and 90 years.
“You were just 85 days short of your 18th birthday,” McBath wrote, adding later that she “always had such big dreams for you. I just knew you would be the one to fight for change in our community.”
Citing the historic elections of Black leaders like President Barack Obama, Vice President Kamala Harris and Georgia Sen. Raphael Warnock, McBath also suggested that Jordan may have even followed in her footsteps and eventually sought public office: “you would be working to change what’s broken in our country.”
She added: “How I wish you were still here to celebrate with us. I know you are with me, watching over me every day.”
McBath’s full Twitter thread of her open letter commemorating what would have been her son’s 26th birthday follows below.
Today is my son Jordan's 26th birthday. This is one of the hardest days of the year.
This year, I wrote Jordan a letter:
Happy birthday, Jordan. How I wish you were still here to celebrate with us. I know you are with me, watching over me every day.. (1/x) pic.twitter.com/2ELu9RSKxa
— Lucy McBath (@lucymcbath) February 16, 2021
McBath was able to turn her personal tragedy into political triumph when she won her Congressional primary ahead of the historic 2018 midterm elections. She went on to win the general election after running on a gun control platform in a very pro-gun state and credited her son for propelling her political career to the doorsteps of Congress after she won her primary.
Prior to her election, McBath had never held elected office. However, after Jordan’s death, she left her job as a flight attendant and became a gun control activist, working as a spokeswoman for Everytown for Gun Safety and Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America. She along with too many other Blck women who have lost their sons to preventable violence have become collectively known as the “Mothers of the Movement” for their efforts toward social justice.
McBath stepped onto the national stage at the 2016 Democratic National Convention, joining eight other mothers whose Black children were killed by cops or gun violence. She originally wanted to run for a seat in Georgia’s state House. However, the shooting massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in February prompted McBath to seek a congressional seat.
Sadly, the phenomenon of angry white men killing Black people over loud music has continued. In November, a 47-year-old white man named Robert Paul Keegan fatally shot Aidan Ellison, a 19-year-old Black man, in the chest, while Ellison was sitting in his car in a parking lot in Oregon. The two reportedly got into a confrontation about Ellison’s loud music.
Honoring Mothers Of The Movement For Black Lives
1. Wanda Cooper-Jones, Ahmaud Arbery's mother
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"Ahmaud didn't deserve to go the way that he went."— ABC News (@ABC) May 7, 2020
Mother of Ahmaud Arbery, an unarmed black man killed in Georgia in an incident that has sparked national outrage, speaks out to @GMA: https://t.co/kpyzWICBWO pic.twitter.com/Yz8bRE5Cav
2. Sean Reed's mother
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Mother and father of #SeanReed speaking to IMPD chief. He offers little to no answers even though you can hear the parents begging and the mother is in hysterics. Police chief up and leave with uncertainty in the air. Can you believe this?😤 #BlackLivesMatter pic.twitter.com/IKN7CpREsM— Childish GamReno (@TheCh1pSkylark) May 7, 2020
3. Gwen Carr
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“My family has been waiting, suffering for five years while NYPD Officer Pantaleo’s lawyers tried every trick in th book to prevent this disciplinary trial from going forward. I’m happy for today’s decision, but I expect a long fight ahead,” Gwen Carr, #EricGarner’s mother. pic.twitter.com/nY1Oxm9TTQ— CPR #EndPoliceSecrecy - Change the NYPD (@changethenypd) May 9, 2019
4. Sybrina Fulton4 of 11
5. Maria Hamilton
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.@MrsShug Maria A. Hamilton holds up Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett's proclamation declaring today #DontreDay at Red Arrow Park, where her son Dontre was killed by a police officer in April of 2014.#Justice4Dontre pic.twitter.com/ukTUjGRgAf— Joseph Brusky (@JosephBrusky) May 5, 2018
6. Wanda Johnson
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Oscar Grant’s mother Wanda Johnson stands firm on call for station renaming: Grant Fruitvale Station pic.twitter.com/8cJ8AbwMQN— Rachel Swan (@rachelswan) January 1, 2019
7. Lucy McBath
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I don't want an apology from the NRA. I want their organization to stop putting profits over public safety.— Lucy McBath (@lucymcbath) May 7, 2019
⁰We will keep fighting for common sense laws until our families are safe.
Stand with me if you agree it’s time we do something about it. ⬇️https://t.co/jusIb9YJD6 pic.twitter.com/Pl9vN7xjOz
8. Lesley McSpadden
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Lesley McSpadden, the mother of Mike Brown Jr honored me with taking her photos. During the shoot, I asked her if she would feel comfortable taking a photo at the spot where her son laid. She hesitated but said yes.— Ohun Ashe 🌻🌼🌞 (@Ohun_Ashe) March 21, 2019
So here she is, through all of that pain, still standing. pic.twitter.com/cBXBUHz2dU
9. April Pipkins
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Sybrina Fulton, #TrayvonMartin’s mom, offered words of encouragement and support to April Pipkins, E.J. Bradford’s mom, on the day their family found out the officer who shot and killed Bradford was cleared of any wrongdoing.— Jamiese Price (@ThePriceReport) February 6, 2019
Today would have been Trayvon’s 24th Birthday. pic.twitter.com/d7tMQBFd6c
10. Geneva Reed-Veal10 of 11
11. Samara Rice11 of 11
Rep. Lucy McBath Writes Emotional Birthday Letter To Late Son Jordan Davis: ‘I Wish You Were Still Here’ was originally published on newsone.com