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Georgia mom fights for change after her son is killed by stray bullet

“Jared Brown should still be here. He should be getting ready for his 30th birthday. His mom should not be sitting here with me, talking about his death. But here we are.”
Published: May. 27, 2022 at 5:21 PM EDT
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ATLANTA, Ga. (CBS46) - An Atlanta mother who lost her son to gun violence is trying to prevent another mother from being forced to bury her child for the same reason.

”He was my only son,” said Jared’s mom, Sharmaine S. Brown.

Jared Brown, should still be here.

”He was 23 years old. It happened two weeks before his 24th birthday,” said Brown.

He should be getting ready to celebrate his 30th birthday. His mom, should not be sitting here with me, talking about his death.

”Jared wasn’t sick. He was young. He was 23 years old. He had a full life still ahead,” said Brown.

But here we are.

”It is a hard, gut-wrenching, pain that I have never lost,” said Brown.

Jared was killed at a cookout. He was shot, over an argument he was not a part of, an argument between two other men...over 30 dollars.

”I was not going to allow this to continue to happen and not say anything about it. Jared’s voice was silenced but I demanded that I was going to continue to be his voice,” said Brown.

Jared’s death closed a chapter of his mom’s life and opened a new one. Sharmaine, changed careers, she became a licensed grief counselor and started a nonprofit in her son’s honor.

”The grief never leaves. I just find ways to process it...I work through the moments and keep going. I know the need is great and so many lives have been lost even since Jared’s death,” said Brown, “Jared’s Heart of Success was birthed after Jared’s death.”

The foundation works to end gun violence through legislation. They work with Georgia kids, teaching conflict resolutions and de-escalation; learning how to solve problems without resorting to violence. She even provides resources for moms and dads who have lost their babies, the same way she lost Jared.

”Doing this work, gives me some sense of knowing I am doing SOMETHING, for someone, to help another family, to help another mother,” said Brown, “I want to see gun violence, come to an end. I want to live in a world, free on gun violence. Our lawmakers can make a difference, they can propose laws to save lives.”

Most recently it has become easier for Georgians to carry guns- with the recent passing of the constitutional carry law. Democratic lawmakers are pushing to ease some state gun laws, no new legislation has been introduced.

Jared's Heart of Success, Inc.