Just hours before he was shot dead, Marvin Cross’s mother went to church on Monday night and prayed for God to keep her family safe.
But little did she know that in the wee hours of Tuesday morning, she would get a call that Cross and his friend Worlene Joseph were murdered.
Shortly before 2 am on Tuesday, 41-year-old Cross, Joseph, 67, and Seeta Ram, 41, were at Joseph’s home on Dubarry Street Extension, Fyzabad when a gunman approached and opened fire.
Cross and Joseph died on the spot while Ram was taken to hospital.
When Newsday visited the scene on Tuesday, the lights on Joseph’s wooden house were still on and there was blood in the yard. One of his close male relatives, who did want to be named, told Newsday he was awakened around 3 am by his son with the news of the murders.
“Everybody is shocked and sad. I didn’t see him for a good while, but when I saw him he was always talkative.
“All now I still don’t know much about what happened. I don’t know how much bullets he got or anything.”
Even though Joseph was a pensioner, he did home-maintenance jobs around the community.
He had two children and several grandchildren.
A shopkeeper told Newsday Joseph had cashed his pension cheque earlier on Monday and visited the shop at 6.45 pm to pay off a bill.
“After he cleared his bill, he said he was going home until in the morning because he worked not far from here.
“He was normal and good last night…he didn’t look funny or any kind of way. He was real friendly, talkative, and he had no enemies…he was cool.”
Born and raised in the community, the shopkeeper said Joseph was nicknamed “Caribbean Fox” after he started dressing like characters from the 1970 drama with the same name.
The shopkeeper said the community was shocked by the murders and hopes justice is served.
When Newsday visited Cross’s family home, his mother – who did not want to be named – told Newsday she had just prayed in church for her family’s safety less than seven hours before the murders.
A worker at Bhola’s Hardware in Fyzabad, she said Cross came home from work on Monday night and packed lunch for work the next day. He left home after 9 pm which was when she last saw him alive.
She said, “The food is still in the fridge. He’s a big man so he goes out when he wants, but this time he didn’t come back.”
She was first called by a friend who told her about the incident.
“I say it’s a case of the wrong place at the wrong time. My son is a loving man. Everybody in the road and around know he’s a kind-hearted person with real love.
“Everything is in God’s hands.”
Cross had no children. He lived with his mother and a brother.
Newsday was told Ram was still hospitalised up to Tuesday afternoon. Several people told Newsday she is frequently seen walking around the community but not much is known about her.
Autopsies are scheduled for Wednesday. Homicide Bureau Region II police are still investigating.