BESSEMER, Ala. (WIAT) — UPDATE: The memorial for Trenton Way has been changed to Thursday at 5 p.m. at Kangaroo Express on Highway 150 and Fairfax, a post to the WIAT 42 News Facebook page said.
ORIGINAL: This Wednesday, Trenton Way’s family was planning to gather to hang lights and put up the Christmas tree.
Instead, they will be attending his memorial service at the Kangaroo Express in Bessemer where he had worked for about a year. “He was kind and generous to everyone,” his aunt, Doris Howard, explained, “and he really did not meet strangers.”
Trenton, 27, was killed last Wednesday during a robbery at the gas station were he was the on-duty clerk. Howard says that she was often worried about him at work.
“When I would drop him off some nights, I was like, this is not a very safe situation here. This store is just wide open late at night.”
Bessemer Police responded to the shots fired call around 1:30 a.m. The suspect–or suspects–had already made off with an undetermined amount of cash and merchandise. Trenton had been shot and killed. “God is looking at them,” Way’s grandmother, Lula Howard, said of the suspects. “They’re going to catch them. I’ve got a feeling, and I know they’re going to catch them.” Police have released a description of a possible suspect:
- Black male (possibly 5’10” or less & medium build)
- Wearing a black/dark colored hoodie, faded blue jeans (with a possible tear on the right front pants pocket)
- Black handgun; not a revolver
- Left with trash bag containing an undetermined amount of money and merchandise
- Ran towards Fairfax Avenue
Police think it’s possible that at least two or more people were involved in the crime.
Way’s family tells WIAT 42 they are anxious for answers. They describe Trenton as a “teddy bear” and say he was devoted to his family and his goals. “He loved video games,” Howard explained. “He would be out early in the morning playing them, and they were loud, too!”
Way studied Game Arts Design at school. His family said he wanted to work professionally on video games or computers. He had also recently expressed interest in becoming a police officer.
Coworkers and friends gathered at the Kangaroo in the hours after Trenton’s death. They left a large card, candles, and other small gifts to honor Trenton–who they called “a loving soul”. Way’s family said they have been overwhelmed by the number of people who have reached out to them. “I got 200 friend requests,” his sister, Brittany Marshall, said, “just from people that knew him.” Marshall explained that many people encountered Trenton at the gas station when they came in for their morning coffee or to purchase gas. They said he would always interact with the customer’s children — even giving some candy on a regular basis. Way’s family is mourning the fact that he never had the opportunity to get married or start his own family.
The page reads:
Our Gentle Giant was taken from us on December 16, 2015 by someone who don’t care about life. In any way that you can help will be grateful. We are missing you daily Trent. May you continue to Rest In Heaven!!! Justice will be served!!!
You can find the link to it HERE.
The family is also inviting everyone who knew and loved Trenton to attend the memorial service on Wednesday, December 23rd at 5:00 p.m. at the Kangaroo Express.
If you have information that could help investigators, you are asked to contact the Bessemer Police Dept. at (205) 425-2411 or the Tip Line at (205) 428-3541.
Copyright 2015 WIAT 42 News