Keith M. Blair
21 Years Old

January 11, 1976 to June 14, 1997

Keith M. Blair was from Goose Creek, South Carolina.

A few of the things Keith loved to do was to play football, baseball, ride bikes and take long walks. He loved to hang-out with his friends. Keith liked MTV and country music. His favorite movies were Lion King, the Crow, Mortal Combat, Land Before Time and old war movies.

Keith was helpful to his family. When his sister unexpectedly lost her babysitter, he took-over because he loved his nieces. They were very special to him. Keith was also looking forward to his new niece; his sister was soon to have her third girl. The new niece would have been showered with love from her uncle as she was born two days after Keith died...she missed someone very special.

Holidays and Keith’s birthday were special times. Christmas 1996 will always be remembered because it was Keith’s last one. Money was tight for our daughter, so we helped-out for our grandchildren. Keith understood and gave in his own way. We did without so they could have a brighter Christmas. What gave my heart joy was watching Keith give the presents to his nieces. His joy seeing their eyes light-up and their smiles made me think what a good father he would make some day. I will never forget that Christmas.

Keith was handicapped with a behavioral problem and learning disability. At an early age, we got help for him. He was in Special Ed Classes. Keith overcame his behavioral problem with the help of family and therapy. He learned to control his temper and knew that fighting did not solve problems. Keith tried hard to stay out of trouble but he was not perfect. A young man trying to “find himself,” Keith was a peacemaker with his friends. He always tried to keep them out of trouble, too. He did not like gangs or drugs and as he got older, he thought gangs were stupid. His friends felt Keith was trustworthy as he kept their secrets and problems to himself. Always helping if he could, Keith only wanted to belong and be loved.

Sometime after Keith’s death, I decided to write about how wrongly Keith was murdered and our struggle to understand why, with no answers to many questions...why did the system keep letting this criminal out with 11 years of crimes? I feel to this day, if they had kept him in jail, our son would still be here. This man got out of jail one week early and was on probation when this happened. Where was the law to protect our son’s rights?

I feel unsafe. Our son’s life was taken for no reason…..I miss Keith so much.

CIRCUMSTANCES OF THE MURDER

Solved by: Berkeley County Sheriff’s Department
Murderer: Daniel Craig Wilson, 29 years old
Accomplices: Ollie Morris Carroll, Jr. and Daren Joseph Jones, both 17 years old
Convicted: Wilson got Life Without Parole, Carroll, Jr. and Jones got six consecutive years Wilson: a repeat offender 1986 to 1997
Carroll, Jr. and Jones: no records, were involved in the beating

As a family, we still have no true answers of what happened. This was murder and it was senseless. We learned about our son through a newspaper article.

Keith had left his ID at home. He was shot in the head and left on the road to die. Later on, we found-out about the two beatings he endured before he was shot. This occurred in the early morning hours of June 12, 1997. We found-out late afternoon on Friday the 13th because there were three other families who were missing loved ones.

Everyone says “Be happy they caught the guys who did the crime.” With a broken heart, who can feel happy? Our only son was murdered by a heartless person.

In the courtroom, the criminal acted like nothing was wrong with no feelings of remorse. Even though he is in jail doing life with no parole, he still lives...our son never made it. Doctors told us he could have died right after they sedated him and put him on all the machines. The swelling of his brain never went-down.

We did not have the chance to tell our son we loved him or to say our good-byes.

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