Mother forgives son’s killer at nightime vigil

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“This is Boogie’s World,” reads the title on a framed photo of Brian Clark, the centerpiece of a vigil. The photo frame was signed by those who came to mourn the death of the 19-year-old city man. Photo/Pat Grossmith

MANCHESTER, NH — A grieving mother told a crowd of about 200 people that she did not want something bad to come out of her son’s death.

“This is getting out of control,” Maria Miranda, 43, said standing in front of a candle-lit poster of her son, Brian “Boogie” Clark, 19, who died Tuesday night of a gunshot wound to the chest outside the Elliot at River’s Edge on Queen City Avenue, where the vigil was held.


Related: Obituary for Brian D. ‘Boogie’ Clark


“I know who killed my son but you know what?  I can forgive him for it because God is out there and He is in control,” she said.  “Please do not take this into your own hands.  If you are out there gangbanging, please stop.”

She did not identify the shooter by name.

Maria Miranda, Brian Clark’s mother, and his stepfather Richard Garcia. Photo/Pat Grossmith

Miranda said she has lived in the city for 25 years.  “I love all you guys,” she said.   “I am here always and I always told you that.”

She said she could never say Brian was “such a good kid.  Believe me, he really wasn’t,” which drew laughter from the crowd.  Smiling through her tears, she said he was a “showoff.  He ran his mouth like a mother****** because he could,  exactly.  But Brian would take his shirt off and give it to anybody.”

Miranda said she has received numerous messages from people wanting to set up a GoFundMe page to help with funeral expenses.   She said she didn’t need it, that the cost of the funeral was covered.  She said her son always took care of her.

“He made sure I never ever went without, and he was only 19,” she said.

Friends gathered to grieve Brian “Boogie” Clark, who died Tuesday of a gunshot wound to the chest. Photo/Jeffrey Hastings, frameofmindphoto.com

She also said if anyone did set up a GoFundMe page in her son’s name, she wanted all the money collected to be donated to charitable groups that fight against gangs and gun violence.

Asked by a reporter if she believed her son’s death was connected to gangs, Miranda said no.

The crowd of mostly young people stood quietly as she talked.  Earlier, some signed a poster titled, “This is Boogie’s World” with a picture of Clark with his dog.  A rosary was attached to it as well.

Clark attended both Central and Memorial high schools, graduating from the latter.

Paul Preda, 20, was friends with Clark for 10 years. No one called him Brian, he said, although Clark’s mother did at the vigil

About 200 people gathered at a vigil to honor shooting victim Brian Clark, 19, of Manchester. The memorial was held at the Elliot at River’s Edge where on Tuesday about 9 p.m someone left the wounded teen on the ground. Photo/Pat Grossmith

“It was always Boogie, ” he said.   Why?  “He was always a booger,” Preda laughed.

Clark loved his car, a 2007 BMW which Preda said he fixed up.

“He was always going out to eat.  He loved lobster.  He worked on his car and motorcycle and he loved going out dirt biking,” Preda said.  “You’d never see him without a smile on his face.  That’s one thing I remember about him.”

Preda said he received a phone call Tuesday night from someone who told him Clark had been shot.  He received a second call a couple of hours later telling him his friend had passed away.

“It broke my heart,” he said.

Miranda said visiting hours will be next Wednesday from 4 to 8 p.m. at the Phaneuf Funeral Home and Crematorium on Hanover Street.

Miranda said she expected anyone who comes to the funeral home to come in peace.

“I don’t want trouble at all.  I don’t want no ruckus,” she said.