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'He should be here': Family of gun violence victim, Jarod Rogers, gather in remembrance on his birthday

Jarod Rogers, 25, was shot in Shawnee during an armed robbery in November. Rogers died December 2, 2023, at an Overland Park Hospital.
Birthday Celebration for Jarod Rogers
Posted at 10:27 PM, May 27, 2023
and last updated 2023-05-27 23:33:39-04

SHAWNEE, Kan. — Saturday, May 27, was not the usual birthday party for the family of Jarod Rogers, who was 25 years old when he was shot during an armed robbery in Shawnee, Kansas, in November 2022. He died days after the shooting.

“He should be here,” said Jody Blohm, Rogers' mom. “We just wanted to send some balloons and let him know we love and miss him so much.”

RELATED | Man charged in shooting in Shawnee that killed Kansas City, Missouri, man

Blohm said the process isn’t easy, but she and her family are able to fill an empty space in their life with memories of their brother, son and friend.

“He was always the light in the room," Blohm said. "He never let anybody feel alone, and now we are all alone. Everyday I wake up, it’s heavy. You never recover, especially being my oldest child, the one that made me a mom.”

Blohm said she is now trying to hold onto her other four children and family for strength while mourning the loss of her son.

“I keep expecting a phone call. I keep expecting him to show up,” Blohm said. "We’ve kept his phone on so we hear his voice, I mean until everything is said and done, I’m just stuck.”

Although her days will never be the same, Blohm said she will continue to celebrate her son on his birthday and every day.

“You can move forward, you can focus on something that reminds you of them, that brings you joy in remembrance of them,” Blohm said.