|image from GoFundMe|
A few hours after Ms. Aldridge was shot and killed, a terrible and similar scenario took place on the 900 block of Wilson. The 55-year-old man who was murdered Friday by an errant bullet, like Ms. Aldridge, didn't have anything to do with gangs. He was shot and killed because someone decided it was appropriate behavior to open fire on a busy street. We don't know the shooter's motivation. Maybe someone gave him a nasty look. Maybe someone said something mean about him on social media.
Robert "Bobby" Kraft didn't have celebrity relatives. According to his former wife, who now lives in Florida, he didn't have "any relatives to speak of." Annie Kraft didn't want to see his body go unclaimed, so she opened a GoFundMe page to raise money so that her ex-husband could have a service, a cremation, and a small stone to be remembered. CWB Chicago has reprinted her statement.
When Uptown Update's Facebook page ran a link to Annie's GoFundMe page Sunday afternoon, it had raised about $1200 of the then-$5000 goal. As of 2:30pm on Monday, $4570 has been raised.
This doesn't surprise us. For all our differences, Uptowners are a generous and compassionate lot. We want to help. Nearly 100 people so far have given what they can to help bury a man most of them didn't know.
Bobby Kraft will have a decent burial, thanks to Annie Kraft and kind-hearted donors, past and future.
But it's a comment on our blog that deserves attention. Burying an innocent victim of street savagery shouldn't be the end goal. Annie Kraft's fiance writes from Florida:
We are the ones who received the call from CPD, informing us of his murder. We ask that anybody that sees this "black man in red hoodie," who apparently, "is always walking around [the] area," to immediately call the authorities! Nobody is going to know who "dimed" him out! This punk needs to be brought to justice, and must pay for what he has done! The longer he, and his other gangbanger, dirtbag friends remain at large, who knows how many more innocent, peaceful citizens, will be gunned down?If you can help the police solve this murder, please do. If you are afraid of retribution, use the TXT2TIP program to anonymously report what you know.
The Mayor, never had any balls! Those of us who do, would, and should, help put a stop to this crap NOW!
Please help Chicago stop the cycle of murders! It's never too late!!!
We can, and are helping to, bury Bobby Kraft, an innocent victim of street violence. But someone out there, maybe multiple someones, know who murdered him. If you have information, please help identify his killer before someone else is murdered. Remember, this is the second innocent bystander who has died this month in Uptown due to men who don't mind if they kill the wrong person.
And the beat went on. Two people were shot on the North Side over the weekend, a woman riding in a car in West Ridge on Friday night, and a man on Sunday evening who was parking his car in West Rogers Park.
The link to Bobby's GoFundMe is here. The link to TXT2TIP is here.