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Remembering Lois Oglesby, A Victim Of The Dayton Shooting


Now we remember the life of one of the nine people killed in Dayton, Ohio, over the weekend. Lois Oglesby was 27 years old. She was a devoted mother who found new purpose in life after the birth of her second child two months ago. NPR's Brakkton Booker spoke to Oglesby's grandmother and has this remembrance.

BRAKKTON BOOKER, BYLINE: Joanne Ivory is a lifelong resident of Dayton, Ohio, and has 19 grandchildren. One of them was Lois Oglesby. But she says no one in the family called Lois by her given name.

JOANNE IVORY: We called her Nae Nae (ph) because that was her middle name. She was named after her other grandmother. And it was Lois Lenae Oglesby.

BOOKER: Ivory, who is 71, shows me a family picture taken a few years ago. Oglesby is beaming and wearing big hoop earrings. Her daughter Hannah sits on her lap.

IVORY: OK. This is Nae Nae. That's Nae Nae.

BOOKER: So this is Nae Nae's oldest.

IVORY: Yes. Yes. That was Ms. Hannah. Yeah. She's 7 now.

BOOKER: Ivory says she and her granddaughter Nae Nae were a lot alike.

IVORY: She was real feisty; she really was. She was sweet in so many ways. But she didn't take no mess off of nobody.

BOOKER: Ivory says Oglesby struggled after her first pregnancy. She was expecting twin girls. But only one of them, Hannah, survived childbirth. Ivory says Oglesby lost focus. She didn't have a steady job until she had her second daughter, Reigh, a few months ago. She had plans to go back to school to become a nurse. And last weekend, Ivory says, Oglesby had someone watch the kids so that she could have a night out.

IVORY: And so she finally wanted just to get out and have some fun. She get out to go have a little fun with her girlfriend. And she ended up dead because of somebody...

BOOKER: She can't finish the thought - just thinking of the way her granddaughter died, gunned down by a stranger.

IVORY: So I don't understand it. I just I don't understand. I know God will get us through it. But I don't understand. Why our family?

BOOKER: On this day, Ivory's wearing a purple shirt. And on it, there's a big silver cross and big, glittery letters that say, woman of faith.

So was your faith ever shaken?

IVORY: You think this ain't shook my faith? Hell, my faith has been shaken, really, really shaken. How can this happen to me?

BOOKER: Ivory often reads from the Bible.

IVORY: He comforts us in all our troubles.

BOOKER: But, really, it just depends on the day.

IVORY: And somedays, I have to read that two, three times. Somedays, I don't read it at all. I don't want to hear about the comfort.

BOOKER: Like many other families in Dayton, this one is making funeral arrangements. Ivory hopes they can hold services for Lois Lenae Oglesby on Saturday. But she adds it's tough to plan anything because the coroner's office hasn't yet released the body.

Brakkton Booker, NPR News, Dayton, Ohio. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Brakkton Booker is a National Desk reporter based in Washington, DC.