WASHINGTON - Days after her son was murdered, a D.C. mother met the man who tried to save his life and stayed by his side as he died.
TaQuan Pinkney, 18, was killed on Stanton Road in Southeast D.C. Sunday afternoon as he was walking to buy a soda. Police told his family he wasn’t the intended target in the shooting. So far, investigators have made no arrests.
Stanley McHaney heard the gunshots from his home Sunday and rushed outside. He said he found Pinkney in a grassy area struggling to breathe.
“I knelt down beside him and I asked his name,” McHaney said. “I said, ‘Tay, I’m Mac. I’m here to help you.’ I told him, ‘Don’t try to talk, just look at me. Continue focusing on breathing.’ I told him that God loved him.”
He said soon after, Pinkney took his last breath.
“I did chest compressions, but because of the wound, I had to stop,” McHaney said. “So I sat there and I held his hand, and waited for the police and ambulance to get here.”
TaQuan’s mother, Yolanda Pinkney, cried in McHaney’s arms when they met on Thursday evening.
“Thank you. Thank you for staying with my baby,” she said. “Thank you for doing everything that you could.”
Pinkney said something that has helped her pain is knowing her son wasn’t alone in his final moments.
“Words can’t express, they really can’t,” Pinkney said. “I just want to thank you so much. I really do. I just know that he wasn’t alone. Somebody was with him and they had a heart and a soul and a spirit just like him. Because that’s what he would have did.”
What happened has weighed on McHaney too. He said he has visited the place where TaQuan died over and over again.
Later on Thursday at a vigil, TaQuan was remembered as a caring young man who loved his family and was ready for college.
Even after he was taken so senselessly, Yolanda Pinkney said her son will always be with her. And so will that bit of comfort that in his last moments, he had someone with him.
“I love you,” she told McHaney.
“I love you too,” he said.