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Man blinded by gun violence wants to send a message to others

Updated: Saturday, July 20 2013, 10:18 PM CDT
Written by: Kyle Rogers

In 1994, Ricky Banks. Jr. of Harrisburg missed the ride to a homecoming party. The boy, who just turned 16, was behind the wheel of a car at the corner of 13th and Sycamore Streets in the city. It would be the last time he’d see anything.

“I actually got shot in my head,” Banks said. 

Banks said he went to his parent’s house to see if his parent’s would drive him to a party after a friend had not picked him up. While his parents were sleeping, Banks said he took the car without their permission; a trip ending with family and friends not knowing if Banks would survive.

Scars show on his face and head, but he hopes his message will leave an even longer impression.

“I want to help stop the violence because the kids are killing each other for no reason,” said Banks.

With a dozen homicides reported in the capital city, Banks has had enough of the violence and wants to do speaking engagements and programs to take children off of the streets to learn.

“It’s a womb out there in the city of Harrisburg that’s hurting,” said Banks. “The kids is crying, as we sit out here speaking, they want help. I want to be one to help them.”

Albert Mauldin, who’s called an angel by banks, has been with Banks during this journey. He’s hoping for Banks’ to get more exposure in the community so young children can learn the consequences of violence.

“When you can listen to somebody who can walk the walk, and talk the talk, it makes a difference,” said Mauldin.

“I was wrong,” recalls Banks. “But, now, I'm trying to change to a right to help the other kids out.”

Posters featuring Banks contact information and desire to speak and serve at engagements have been posted throughout the city. Man blinded by gun violence wants to send a message to others

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