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Mother reflects on what Mother's Day means to her 10 years after her son was killed

Monique Willis with a photo of her son, Alonzo Thompson IV
Posted at 5:34 PM, May 03, 2024

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Monique Willis doesn't know where her son, Alonzo Thomas IV, is buried in XII Gates Cemetery.

After 10 years, it's too hard for her.

It's the first time she's even been to the cemetery since he was buried.

"I’m not ready to look at the ground, I'm not ready to look at the concrete, I’m not ready to look at the cement, I'm not ready to look at his headstone and look at, I don’t, I don’t want to," Willis said.

Thompson was shot on April 5, 2014. Willis received a phone call about her son's death when she was out of town and had to travel home.

The murder case is still unsolved.

Monique Willis, lost son, Alonzo, in 2014

It's also 10 years of birthdays, celebrations, and Mother's Day's lost.

"It’s a day without him, it’s another day without him," Willis said.

That's something other families are feeling in Kansas City as the city's gun violence epidemic continues.

11-year-old Kourtney Freeman was shot and killed. Detectives are investigating, but no arrests have been made.

Despite the pain, Willis is a Momma on a Mission. She started the group not long after her son was killed with the goal to support other mothers who lost children.

"Keeping the names and faces, saying them, remember them, remember the date, remember the time," Willis said. "Remember."

That work is the gift she continues to give to her son and plans to continue her efforts for many Mother's Day's to come.

"I’m not doing it for me, as usual, I’m doing this for him," Willis said. "As his mother, you do what you can for your children, dead or alive. I’m always gonna be his mother."