NEW ORLEANS - It was a year ago Wednesday night when a Garden District father went out to his car to get something for his special needs daughter.
That's when a neighbor heard two gunshots and a man shouting "no."
A 53-year-old local attorney lay in his driveway paralyzed. He lost 30 pints of blood and wasn't expected to live. The men then went in the house and stole several things, even out of the daughter's hands.
A year later, the family is still struggling.
The headlines are over, so is the search for suspects. Three arrests were made. The alleged perpetrators are locked up. But for the Kaynor family, the struggle is far from over.
"For me and for our family and friends, the nightmare continues. Every day that goes by, we're reminded of the loss of this incredible wonderful person," said Grace Kaynor of her husband Sandy.
One year later, Sandy is in the ICU at Touro. A bright attorney, he had been making progress with therapy, was able to live at home in a bed with 24-hour attendants. He began to speak a few words. But recently, serious infections set into his lungs, bones, and kidneys.
"My 15-year-old is still struggling to come to terms with all this. He wonders why this happened and how to make since of it. My (nine-year-old) daughter's okay. She just wants to know when Daddy's coming home,"
Grace is very grateful to friends and the community for the fundraisers and donations. Those have helped Sandy's care tremendously. But those are over too. She is thankful for having medical insurance, but still with major out of pocket medical costs the Kaynor family is turning to community projects, helping troubled youth to keep other families from living what she calls 'horror.'
"If you don't produce positive alternatives for teenagers, then they have no choice but to go where they feel that they belong," Grace recalls hearing from a person involved in programs to help those at risk. She's been looking into the Mayor's midnight basketball program and the Youth Empowerment Project.
And when she sees the defendants in court one day?
"I just want them to know I don't have any hate, hate in my heart for them, nor does my son. We just don't understand why they could have done this to us or to my husband. And we don't want other people to feel like this is alright to take a life that doesn't belong to them and destroy it," she said.
The Kaynors' son started a website with his friends, teensagainstgunviolence.org/.
And the family has been talking to teens who have benefitted from mentoring programs.