Family holds memorial service for Springfield man killed by DEA agent

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A vigil held Saturday night at Kickapoo High School was not your typical memorial service.

Instead of everyone locking arms and tearfully lighting candles, an event held to honor Caleb Slay started with Soulja Boy’s “Crank That” blaring over the loudspeaker and dancing on the football field.

“Caleb didn’t like people to be sad, he wanted you to be happy. He wanted to make everybody laugh,” said Slay’s mother, Tina Slay Richardson.

Authorities say Slay, 25, was fatally shot by a DEA agent Monday afternoon following a confrontation outside of Slay’s home in the 1800 block of South Maryland Avenue.

Friends and family of Caleb Slay dance on the Kickapoo High School football field during a vigil in his memory on Saturday, Nov. 7, 2020.

On Saturday evening, dozens of people went to Kickapoo (Slay’s alma mater) to show support for Slay’s family.

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Richardson said Saturday’s display of support is evidence the DEA’s narrative of Monday’s encounter — that Slay was the armed aggressor in a confrontation with an agent who was doing surveillance on someone else — does not add up.

“It proves the narrative that we’ve been given is wrong,” Richardson said. “Because these people wouldn’t be here if the narrative was right.”

Richardson has asked the Springfield community to reserve judgment on her son until more facts are revealed in the case. On Saturday, she urged those in attendance to demand justice for Slay.

“Caleb needs your help because he can’t be here to talk,” Richardson said.

Friends and family of Caleb Slay gathered at the Kickapoo High School football field for a vigil in his memory on Saturday, Nov. 7, 2020.

At Saturday’s memorial event, there was music and dancing as well as a display at the 50-yard line with pictures of Slay along with his old high school football jersey and helmet.

Matt Kersey used to work with Slay doing security at nightclubs downtown. Kersey said Slay was always there when you needed him.

“You could always rely on him,” Kersey said.

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Editor is WebTech Group (WTG). WTG is a web hosting, design, SEO, press release distribution company and news agency located in St. Louis, Missouri. Site is owned and operate multiple news sites in the region. Our objective with STLNewsMissouri.com is to offer readers a one-stop news site for Missouri news. We aggregate news from news media across the state. We do not aggregate news from all sources. We pick from those that offer RSS feeds and pick the best with eliminating those that might produce the same news stories, written differently.
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