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Derrick Rose offers to pay for funeral of 6-month-old baby shot in Chicago

Mar 14, 2013, 2:48 PM EDT

76ers Bulls Basketball AP

It is one of the saddest, makes-your-stomach-turn stories in a long time — in Chicago 6-month-old Jonylah Watkins was shot and killed in what police say was a gang-related attempt on the child’s father’s life while he was changing Jonylah’s diaper in a parked minivan. The baby was shot five times in the incident.

Derrick Rose has stepped up and offered to pay for the funeral, reports ABC affiliate WLS in Chicago.

Rose has offered to help pay for Jonylah’s funeral expenses. Others have come forward to donate money to a reward fund to help find the killer. Tuesday night, that reward fund stood at $11,000. confirmed that with a local preacher. Previously, Rose reportedly paid for the funeral of rapper Lil’ Jo Jo, who was shot while riding his bike in Chicago last fall.

While Rose has heard some frustration from Bulls fans that he has not pushed to get back on the court from ACL surgery as his team has stumbled toward the finish line (the Wednesday night loss in Sacramento was ugly), what nobody has ever questioned is Rose’s love of Chicago. He was born and raised there, he has a passionate commitment to the city. He tweeted in the past, during a rash of murders going on in Chicago, how much it pained him to see the city go through that. He tweeted about the Chicago public schools strike.

Paying for Jonylah’s funeral is a small thing, a small gesture. But it’s something he can do to help a city deal with things far more important than basketball.

  1. paleihe - Mar 14, 2013 at 3:01 PM

    Derrick just seems like a good man. Take your time, get healthy, come back and tear the league a new one.

  2. ss3walkman - Mar 14, 2013 at 3:03 PM

    Senseless. God Bless that child and her family. Admirable thing to do Rose. Much respect.

  3. djjackson81 - Mar 14, 2013 at 3:31 PM

    Yes it is a honorable gesture he should jump in there an pony up a reward for info to find the shooter or shooters. 20 or 30 grand will get someone with info to roll.

    • ultichiva - Mar 14, 2013 at 4:00 PM

      Brah….Rose ain’t gonna promote SNITCHIN’…

      • fanofevilempire - Mar 14, 2013 at 4:22 PM

        snitchin’ are you serious, a 6 month baby was killed, if it was me I would start snitchin
        real fast so the idiot shooter doesn’t get lost. Instead of talking about snichin and
        being afraid maybe people have to step up. The best place for a baby killer is jail, if not
        the punk will kill again.

  4. limonadamas - Mar 14, 2013 at 3:35 PM

    Chicago’s problems run far and deep (and you could substitute a lot of places with urban decay for “Chicago,” like “Detroit”). It’s always uplifting when you have people who are able and willing to shed some light to these places, no matter how small the light may seem in the face of the darkness.

    Thanks, DRose… I know this Laker fan is rooting for you.

    • asimonetti88 - Mar 14, 2013 at 3:45 PM

      Make that two Lakers fans. Not only is he an amazing player to watch, but by all indications, he’s a good dude too. Go D-Rose!

      • fanofevilempire - Mar 14, 2013 at 4:32 PM

        Thumbs up for D-Rose. I hope you get thru to the gangbangers, those
        fools can’t even shoot straight, always missing their target for innocent
        victims. They are just bad because they have a gun.
        A few years back in Chicago someone shot a kid for his Air Jordans, his
        mom didn’t know where he was, he was late getting home from school
        she later learned he was shot in the alley behind their home and died.

  5. allen227 - Mar 14, 2013 at 3:48 PM

    Class move. May not like what he does concerning his basketball obligations but to step up for an innocent child that says a whole lot more.

  6. acaxton1 - Mar 14, 2013 at 4:18 PM

    Reblogged this on Basketball Chick Chicago and commented:
    D.Rose’s gesture gives way to a bigger issue! Rest in Peace Jonylah Watkins.

  7. seanb20124 - Mar 14, 2013 at 4:20 PM

    Good for him, that being said he won’t feel any financial strain from it. I applaud him

  8. patfic15 - Mar 14, 2013 at 4:29 PM

    Chicago…what a dump. Obamas back yard….cmon Prez…… clean it up.

    • hojo20 - Mar 14, 2013 at 7:35 PM

      Prez will be happy to raise your taxes to throw more money at the problem.

  9. azpackerbacker - Mar 14, 2013 at 4:41 PM

    What a great city your running there, Rahm

  10. sasquash20 - Mar 14, 2013 at 5:00 PM

    D.Rose is a class act.

  11. losanginsight - Mar 14, 2013 at 5:09 PM

    Sad story.
    Drose is a good guy but if he continues to pay for funerals in chi town he will be broke before he decides to get back on the court.

  12. dysraw1 - Mar 14, 2013 at 9:43 PM

    god not only bless this kid with tremendess talent, this young man has wisdom beyond his years

  13. mp4philly - Mar 14, 2013 at 10:31 PM

    To the idiot that mentioned ‘snitchin’.. You’re an idiot.

  14. 00maltliquor - Mar 15, 2013 at 1:45 AM

    Sad, SAD story……wow. I just had my first child 7 months ago. He’s only 1 month older then that baby…I feel sick right now.

    D Rose, how can you not love this kid. I wish absolutly nothing but the best for that young man. Class act 1,000%, and not just because of this. It’s just another reason.

  15. kavika6 - Mar 15, 2013 at 6:19 AM

    I wonder if he would have done it if the baby was white.

  16. longhornpride05 - Mar 15, 2013 at 10:14 AM

    Mp4 he’s not an idiot, it’s well known here that snitching on gang related murders will get you killed. Unfortunately the gangs have backed up this policy and that’s why no one talks…

  17. lakerluver - Mar 15, 2013 at 12:30 PM

    And where is that loser that called Rose a clown for not being back on the court yet?! I’m not hardly a Bulls fan but I love D. Rose. He seems to be as good off the court as he is on the court.

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