NIU student home on break fatally shot

December 2, 2010 4:36:12 AM PST
A Northern Illinois University student was home for the extended holiday weekend when he was shot in the Marquette Park neighborhood on the South Side.

"I couldn't even think about who would do this to my son. Who would do this?" said Clarise Miller, victim Marcus Miller's mother.

Clarise and Wesley Miller were proud of their only son Marcus and of the way they raised him. They say the 18-year-old was ldetermined to go to college and was enjoying his freshman year at Northern Illinois University.

"College meant the world to him, and he was really excited about moving on," said Wesley Miller.

The Millers say their son had never been in trouble with the law and did not associate with gang members.

Wesley Miller had planned to drive Marcus back to NIU after last Sunday's Bears game. Marcus wanted to spend the afternoon with some friends who were also home from college so Miller dropped his son at the corner of 71st and Tallman. Twenty minutes later Marcus was dead.

"I was standing at the corner at 71st and Fairfield. I heard six shots ring out in rapid succession," said Fr. Tom Mescall of St. Adrian Catholic Church.

The shots were fired only a few minutes after Cardinal Francis George had left St. Adrian Catholic Church. He was there for the dedication of the church's Our Lady of Fatima statue. For Fr. Tom, it was a tragic end to a beautiful day.

"I felt like Marquette Park was the Garden of Eden that day. It quickly turned because sin entered the picture," said Fr. Tom.

Fr. Tom and Marcus' parents rushed to the scene.

"When we had to run out the door and see our son lying on the ground, to have someone say he is gone, I just went into a rage," said Clarise Miller.

The Millers vow to turn their rage into action.

"Animals don't even treat each other the way that we treat each other in this community, and it's time for it to stop," said Clarise Miller.

Clarise Miller works for Chicago Public Schools. Her husband Marcus is a CPS science teacher. The Millers are also asking for the public's help in finding the person who killed their son.


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