The legacy of an 11-year-old Chicago girl fatally struck by a stray bullet will live on after her organs were donated to eight people, including a cousin in desperate need of a kidney, authorities said.
Little Takiya Holmes was shot in the right temple last Saturday as she sat in a van with her family during a gang fight over drug-dealing territory, police said.
She was pronounced dead on Tuesday, but was kept on life support so that her organs could be donated.
“Well my baby is officially gone,” her heartbroken mother, Naikeeia Williams, wrote on Facebook. “But she saved [eight] lives with her organs.”
One of those lives was her cousin, Darvece Monson, who received the news last week that Takiya was a perfect match, she said. She had waited over two years for a kidney donation.
Monson suffered from chronic kidney disease [CKD], a longstanding disease of the kidneys that leads to renal failure.
“When kidney disease progresses, it may eventually lead to kidney failure, which requires dialysis or a kidney transplant to maintain life,” the National Kidney Foundation notes on its website.
After being diagnosed with the disease, Monson founded More Than Your Kidneys, a non-profit focusing on inspiring and empowering the lives of patients and family members affected by CKD, end-stage renal disease, those going through dialysis and kidney transplantation, she said.
“After tirelessly enduring judgment, lack of understanding, scarcity of resources, and ignorance from society, Darvece emerged into her life assigned role of an advocate and health promoter dedicated to helping patients and their families cope with the realities of CKD/ESRD/Dialysis/Transplantation,” Monson wrote on the organization’s website.
Monson took to social media to share her feelings on the transplant, which she regarded as a "gift of life" from her young cousin.
“I’m still in a state of shock and am just grateful!!!!!” she posted on Facebook.
The welcome transplant also came with sorrow, she noted.
“I’ve always believed in the power of Faith & mind over matter but the facts remain that I have the kidney of an 11 year old dead, beautiful, intelligent, selfless girl in my body who had her entire life ahead of her,” Monson wrote on Facebook. “The facts still remain that a young black man has ruined his life and subscribed to a life of disregard of human life and has an extensive record that goes back to his juvenile years.”
Antwan Jones, 19, was charged with first-degree murder in Holmes’ death, police said. They believe he had fired several shots at a group of men allegedly belonging to a rival gang.
“Obviously, we know now that he didn't hit any of them,” Chicago Police Cmdr. Brendan Deenihan said after Jones’ arrest.
A Home Going service will be held for Takiya from 6-9 p.m. Friday at A.R. Leak Funeral Home, and her funeral will take place at 11 a.m. Saturday, following a one-hour wake, her mother wrote, noting her little girl’s favorite colors were purple and blue.
“The facts remain that this weekend this angel will be buried by parents that love her, siblings, childhood friends and teachers, etc.,” Monson continued on social media. “This innocent life has notoriety as a martyr and left a legacy behind.”