Friends, family speaking out after Salem man killed in Roanoke County triple shooting

By Alison Wickline - Reporter

ROANOKE COUNTY, Va. - Friends and family are speaking out after a Salem man died in Roanoke County's first homicide of the year.

The triple shooting happened Monday morning on Enon Drive near Walrond Park, in the Hollins area. Twenty-three-year-old Keonte Johnson was killed in the triple shooting; one that sent shock waves through a Roanoke County community.

While police officers continue to investigate what happened Monday morning at the house, on Enon Drive, Keonte's friends and family are having a hard time with their loss.

"Not understanding why and not wanting to believe it but knowing it's true but thinking it can't be," said Carmela Underwood, a friend of Keonte and his family.

A motive for the shooting and details surrounding Keonte's death are still unclear. All his family and friends know is that he was a young man just starting his life.

"He had the brightest smile and the biggest heart. He was the first one, if you were down, to make you laugh and cheer you up," said Underwood.

On Sunday, Keonte sent his mom a message for Mother's Day. Sunday was also Keonte's birthday. And just hours later, he was gone, leaving behind devastated friends and family and two children.

"Keonte was so young. He was the baby of the family. It's just like his mom's heart has been torn from her," said Underwood.

As the family works to plan Keonte's funeral, it is also praying for a resolution. 

"He was a good person, and he didn't deserve to die like that," said Underwood.

A GoFundMe account has been set up to help the family with funeral expenses.

The shooting is still under investigation, and no arrests have been made. 

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