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Milwaukee musicians play songs at crime scenes

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Milwaukee (WISN) — The Black String Triage Ensemble has played over a dozen venues. They’re all Milwaukee crime scenes where something traumatic has happened just hours before.

“Our youngest [member] is 11, our oldest (member) is 75,” said Dayvin Hallmon, founder of Black String Triage Ensemble. “They come together around the cause of gun violence in communities of color to help bring peace and healing in the aftermath of these shootings that occur.”

On Friday, the Black String Triage Ensemble first gathered outside a home near 48th and Chambers where a man had been shot earlier in the afternoon.

Police said he sustained non life threatening injuries.

The ensemble then moved several blocks away, near 49th and Center, where a man had sustained multiple gunshot wounds to the legs Friday evening.

“It’s not necessarily so much for the family of the victims, that healing trajectory is a much longer arc of time,” Hallmon said. “But for everyone else in the neighborhood, people who live next door, down the street, maybe there’s somebody that owns a store, everybody that’s in that space is somehow devastated in some way by this impact. So there has to be something that sweeps that away, sweeps those ashes away, so they don’t carry them home.”

Hallmon said they’re made up of black and Latin string musicians, playing instruments like the violin, the cello and upright bass.

He said they all are there to promote how special human life is.

“Why take them to have their mother suffer, their cousin suffer, their father suffer,” Hallmon said. “Why do we have to have a multiplication of grief and why do we need to be so immersed in it? If we can do something about that and get to a point, whether humanity is appreciated and respected, then I won’t say that we solved it but maybe we were a damn good catalyst.”

Hallmon said he is always searching for more musicians to join their ensemble.

WXOW Staff

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