After the death of another friend, advocates look for solutions to gun violence in Lexington

WATCH | After the death of another friend, advocates look for solutions to gun violence in Lexington
Published: Nov. 16, 2022 at 10:49 PM EST
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - A close friend of well-known advocate and the Director of One Lexington Devine Carama was shot and killed Tuesday morning. Now Carama shares that the community has lost a good man, with a big heart.

“We need more Big Bs. We need more people with love in their hearts despite their challenges and imperfections. We need that love and he had it to give,” said Carama.

Carama and Brandon Walker had been friends since childhood. Walker just spoke to students at Tates Creek during Carama’s It Takes a Village Mentorship program on Thursday.

“He’s like this is my purpose in life. I’ve got to give back to these kids. I got to tell them my story so they can avoid some of the things I went through. He said I need you man. Get me in front of these kids. It’s too late for me, but I can give back to them. I said it’s never too late for you. You’re out here saving lives. That was the last time I talked to him. That was Thursday last week. Then Tuesday he’s gone.”

Tuesday morning, 37-year-old Walker was shot and killed on Yellowstone Parkway. A death that Carama said hit people across the city, after an already hard year.

“I have PTSD. I lived that lifestyle. The criminal lifestyle and everything that goes with it. When people get shot and killed and murdered in the streets, I generally know them,” said Corey Dunn, with the Woodhill Martial Arts and Fitness Center.

Over the years, Corey Dunn found his passion and, in turn, a new way of life. Now he’s helping kids do the same.

“As we’re teaching boxing, which is what we use to get them in the door, we’re teaching boxing martial arts, but we’re teaching conflict resolution, mediation, self control, discipline.”

Along with a few other instructors, Dunn opened the Woodhill Martial Arts and Fitness Center, on Woodhill Drive, back in August. Since then it’s been a place for elementary to high school aged kids to train and exercise, but it’s becoming so much more.

“Boxing and martial arts is like chess. It looks so aggressive from the outside. But I have to sit here and think about, well this person is doing this. How do I respond? How do I react? So knowing how to do so in the ring, translates to outside the ring. So when a teacher or someone says something you don’t like, you don’t have to ‘ahh’ and get all crazy. You can say, you know what, it’s not that big of a deal.”

Because what happens in this gym is bigger than boxing.

“If they can make it adult, most of them will carry on to live long, productive lives. We’ve got to get them to that point.”

The center is open to any students looking to learn martial arts and boxing.

As of Wednesday, no arrests have been made in Walker’s murder.