A New York man suffered a fatal heart attack in his home just hours after his son died from a gunshot wound.
The family of Okera Ras I, 54, visited his residence in the Bronx on Aug. 9 to deliver the bad news about the death of his son, 34-year-old Duro Akil, only to find him lifeless in his bed.
“We were in the middle of the street screaming,” Ras I’s daughter, 23-year-old Makini Akil, told the New York Daily News. “In shock. It was like something out of a movie scene.”
On Aug. 7, Duro was struck by a stray bullet after he opened the door of his apartment to investigate a loud disturbance in the hallway. Police say the shot was fired by a man who was having a confrontation with Duro’s neighbor.
Duro was taken to a nearby hospital with a punctured lung. Ras I, who lived with his son and accompanied him to the hospital, believed that Duro would recover. But his injuries were more serious than they initially thought, and he passed away two days later.
As far as his family is concerned, Ras I died of a broken heart.
“It was really too much for him,” Makini said. “It was really like heartbreak.”
Duro’s mother, Adio Akil, told WABC that Ras I was remarkably close to his son.
“They loved each other so much and they had each other’s back,” she said. “It’s a lot. It’s a lot to lose two people at once and two beautiful people.”
“It was so hard to take that, take seeing your son lose two gallons of blood,” Adio added. “I’m angry, I’m sad. For the culprit who took my son away and caused his father to leave I’m angry. I’m also sad for him. I feel sorry for him because when you do what he did there’s a price to pay.”
Ras I had a bachelor’s degree from Morehouse College in Atlanta and a master’s in communications from New York University. He worked for Fox News as a web video producer for a number of years, and had recently left the company to pursue his own business ventures, WFLD reports.
Duro was the eldest of five children. His sister told the New York Daily News that he was a sports enthusiast who had a passion for journalism and creative writing.
Authorities have reportedly identified the man who shot Duro, although it is not clear at this point whether they have apprehended or charged him.