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Basketball event to benefit shooting victims

CONYERS -- A local church will host a benefit for survivors of a September shooting.

Rockdale teacher Kimya Roberson and her daughter Corinne Williams, 10, were shot outside of Little Mountain Christian Academy Sept. 20 by Roberson's estranged husband Terence Roberson.

Springfield Baptist Church, in conjunction with other area churches, Rockdale Public Schools, Rockdale County Sheriff's Office, Project Renewal and Rockdale Emergency Relief, will host a benefit basketball game for Roberson and Williams on Dec. 4 at Salem High School. The event will begin at 5 p.m.

Eric Lee, pastor at Springfield Baptist Church, said though neither Roberson nor Williams were members of the church, the church community wanted to contribute to their recovery.

"We want to prevent something like this happening again," Lee said. "We want to respond by helping a neighbor that's in need. We know that there's some struggles ahead for them and we want to do something."

Proceeds from the event will go to Roberson and Williams' medical expenses.

Lee said people can donate to the "Corinne Williams and Kimya Roberson Contribution Fund" at any local Bank of America.

"Every dime that's raised is going to go to a trust fund for that family to address some of their medical needs," Lee said. "There is a road ahead for them. That includes multiple trips per week for rehabilitation. When there's brain trauma, it's a long way back."

The event will also be used to raise awareness for domestic violence and celebrate Rockdale County's first responders.

"We felt the need for the entire community to pause and not focus on what went wrong that day, but what went right," Lee said. "Since I've been a pastor, most of the tragedy, most of the murders have not been strangers, but people that we know. I hope that this event can prevent instances of violence from happening again."

Lee said the event will have many surprises, including potential celebrity appearances. He said the most important part of the event is giving the community the opportunity to help out a fellow citizen.

"We feel like there's some people who would really get behind the family, and that's what this is about: giving the opportunity to citizens," Lee said.

Tickets can be purchased from Springfield Baptist Church, Lorraine Elementary School or C.J. Hicks Elementary School. Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 at the door. VIP tickets are $50. Residents are also asked to bring a canned good to donate.