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'His life matters:' Heartbroken family says man shot near University of Akron not expected to survive

Alex Beasley among 3 people shot Sunday morning
Posted at 6:51 PM, Sep 23, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-23 19:38:05-04

AKRON, Ohio — Keesha Wilson-Law refers to her son, Alex Beasley, as her "new millennium hippie child", who is free-spirited, fun-loving and a peacemaker.

"I'll never forget his hugs. Nobody hugs me the way Alex hugs me," Wilson-Law said.

Tragically, the mother from Akron is now living a real-life nightmare as she prepares to say goodbye to Beasley, one of three people shot near the University of Akron campus over the weekend.

"I wake up every day because I have to, but when I wake up, I look around my bedroom and I'm hoping it's a dream," she said. "I just don't feel like this is real until I see him take his last breath."

Wilson-Law and her husband, Damione Law, said Beasley, 25, is in process of being taken off a ventilator at Cleveland Clinic Akron General. While they pray for a miracle, the family does not think he will survive.

"The gunshot wound, the cardiac arrest, his brain being jolted from the blast-- he basically will end up passing from his heart-stopping or brain death," Wilson-Law told News 5 during an interview from her home.

Law fought through tears as he described the devastation he's feeling.

"It breaks you and when you feel that break, it's just unreal," he said.

According to Akron police, someone fired shots into a large crowd following a party, just south of campus, at Kling and Wheeler streets around 1:30 a.m. Sunday.

Maya McFetridge, an 18-year-old freshman from Berea, died from the gunfire.

Alex suffered critical injuries after a bullet struck him in the head. His mother said rescue crews revived him, but the damage was too severe.

A 22-year-old man was also shot, but his injuries are not considered life-threatening, according to police.

Police haven't made any arrests or named any suspects.

On Tuesday, the University of Akron Board of Trustees announced a $50,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and indictment of McFetridge's killer or killers.

Wilson-Law said some of her relatives were bothered that UA officials did not mention the two other shooting victims at the news conference.

"I just want people to know that his life matters and his safety matters," she said. "I just want everybody to know it wasn't one victim and their family. It was three victims and their families."

On Thursday, University of Akron spokesperson Tammy Ewin responded to the family's concerns.

"The $50,000 reward, personally funded by the University of Akron's Board of Trustees, is being offered for the arrest and indictment of the person or persons responsible for this terrible crime-- a crime we recognize was committed against three members of the Akron community, including a University of Akron student. As such, the reward applies to all three victims," Ewin said.

Beasley's stepfather said the violence in Akron has "gotten out of hand" and he sent a message to the shooter or shooters who caused so much anguish this weekend.

"Find it in yourself to come forward," he said.

While Wilson-Law waits for justice, she's also spending time by her son's side in his final days. She doesn't believe he has any brain function, but she tells him how much she loves him, along with another important message.

"I just want to thank him for inspiring me to be myself."

Anyone with information on the shootings is urged to call Summit County Crimestoppers at 330-434-COPS.