Teen killed in shooting after lifelong fight with bone cancer

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INDIANAPOLIS – An Indianapolis family is grieving and waiting for answers after an 18-year-old was shot to death Monday night.

Police believe an 18-year-old planned to meet someone for a sale at the Mann Road Pantry on the southwest side of Indianapolis, but during the transaction Daemon Link was shot and killed.

Link’s family says he had struggled fighting cancer for years. Tiera Willis said her younger brother spent most of his life fighting osteosarcoma, which is a form of bone cancer.

“We lost somebody really important to our family, he was the baby of our family," Willis said. "He’s been battling cancer since he was 10 years old. He died at 18. We thought it would be cancer that took him away, but it was a bullet."

Tiera said Daemon had his femur and lung removed long before the shooting Monday night, and took chemo pills every day.

“It took his childhood away. He never had a fair childhood because he was always in hospitals, in and out. It was real tough,” she said.

“For him to be killed this way undoes all the hard work we’ve been doing to keep him alive,” said the victim’s aunt, Clara Tucker.

The Mann Road homicide was the first in a string of seven shootings over six and a half hours that the IMPD responded to. The shootings also included one involving an argument where one man was shot and wounded at a home on Orchard Avenue.

While no one died in the last half dozen incidents, police and Daemon’s family shared a similar message about the violence.

“We just hope people start acting more responsible with these weapons and try to resolve their differences in a more peaceful manner,” said IMPD captain Dulin Nelson.

“Every week I see so many young children and adults cut down for no reason.  It seems to me there’s no value on human life,” said Tucker.

Police say the case remains an active investigation. Anyone with information on the case can contact Crime Stoppers at 317-262-TIPS.

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