TORRANCE (CBSLA) — Lisa Duhon cradles her grandson, 10-month old Joseph — named after his father — a man he will never know.
“It means everything because I have a piece of the good part of my son,” Duhon said.
Joseph Patton was gunned down in a Long Beach neighborhood last week as he finished a shift working at the Conservation Corps of Long Beach. He was helping with a neighborhood beautification project.
“He was my heart. He was my son. My first born,” Duhon said.
Vashley Hamlin is the mother of Patton’s son.
“I think the thing I’m going to miss the most is that he was our protector. It’s like no matter what I go through with him, he’s always going to be there,” Hamlin said.
Police are not releasing many details about the killing. A spokesperson for Conservation Corps of Long Beach says 24-year-old Patton was near the end of his shift with four other workers from the organization. At some point he was outside the truck and someone came up and shot him.
“Whoever hurt him just must have been – I have to say they were a coward. They were afraid,” Duhon said.
Patton had just received a promotion at the Conservation Corps Long Beach and also completed training to become a mechanic. He was laser focused on giving his family a good life.
“I feel like no matter what the situation was – it wasn’t so important that his son should have to be without his father,” Hamlin said. “He was a dad first. This was the love of his life. He loved his son so much.”
Motive is the big question. No arrests have been made in the case.
A GoFundMe page has been set up if you would like to help the family.