Metro mom turns grief over son’s murder into holiday action as case remains unsolved

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- For Jenny Donaldson, the holidays are just another period without her son. The grief of her son’s murder never goes away.

But she's using the season to do something in his honor, while she hopes someone will come forward with information about his death.

“It was December 22, 2014, and it was in the early morning hours,” Donaldson said.

Belton police had come to tell her that her son, 36-year-old Chad Donaldson, had been shot.

“He was leaving QuikTrip, and he was walking home," she continued. "He was maybe three blocks from the house when he got shot.”

Paramedics rushed him to Research Medical Center where doctors told her Chad likely wouldn’t survive the night.

“The surgeon hadn’t left us for like 10 minutes and then we heard over the intercom, ‘Code Blue ICU, Code Blue ICU,'" Jenny said. "He never regained consciousness. If I could have at least told him one more time I loved him.”

Five years later, she’s struggling.

Police haven’t made any arrests in the case, and no one has been charged with taking Chad’s life.

“The police really, they said they don’t know," the metro mom said. "It could’ve been a case of mistaken identity, or it might have been someone he knows.”

Since her son died three days before Christmas, Jenny uses the season to do something in his memory.

“Last year we had all of his friends come and decorate a Christmas tree in his honor,” she said.

This year, she decided to host a collection drive at church for Toys for Tots.

“We got two boxes full of toys, as well as about $130 cash donations and a great big huge 53-foot teddy bear," Jenny said. "Chad loved children. He was just all about children.”

She said closure doesn’t exist but learning who killed him and why will feel like a piece of all of this is in place.

“It makes me feel good to know that he’s not forgotten," she said. "And like I said, I just keep hoping that getting his name out there will eventually reveal who shot him.”

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