DESPITE facing the tragedy of losing her son to a gunman's bullet, Mercena Williams was a picture of strength Wednesday.
Less than 24 hours after her son, Morris Williams, 26, was shot in the back by an armed robber at the busy Young Street in the old capital of Spanish Town, St Catherine, Williams tried to use her adversity to nurture strength of character.
"I have to cope. If I break down it will be worse on me. It's very hard but I have to cope," Williams told the Jamaica Observer as she tried to put her bravest face on.
Police reported that an armed man confronted the owner of the Prince Wholesale at Young Street as he exited his establishment with a bag containing cash.
The businessman reportedly resisted the robber and was pistol whipped about the head before being relieved of the bag of cash, which police say amounted to about $100,000.
The gunman then tried to make his escape on a waiting motorcycle but an alarm was raised and the robber started firing at a group of people whom he thought were attempting to apprehend him.
Williams had just exited a bus and was about to cross the street to catch a route taxi to get to his Portmore home when a bullet from the robber's gun hit him in the lower back.
"He never knew what hit him," said Anthony Williams, the dead man's elder brother.
Another man was also shot in the melee. Both were taken to the hospital but Williams would not return home or to his job at Morrison Street along the Old Harbour Road where he worked as a sculptor.
His brother was also a picture of dejection when the Observer visited their home Thursday. However, he vowed to be strong for his parents who were trying to be valiant in the face of tragedy
"He was my favourite younger brother. That gunman should turn himself in," he said.
Morris Williams is the third of four children for his parents.
His father Eric Williams bemoaned the get rich quick mentality of some of the younger generation.
"These youths have no respect for life neither he, she or the old lady," the elder Williams said.
Yesterday homicide detectives at the St Catherine North Police division said they were working on several leads and were hopeful of making an arrest in the near future.