UPDATE: This article has been updated to include information from Shawnn’s sister, Wendy. Shawnn’s name has been updated and corrected to match spelling according to family. Initial release information listed Shawnn’s name as “Shawn.”
ODESSA, Texas (KMID/KPEJ) – 49-year-old Shawnn McCracken was grateful. He was incredibly kind, too.
Just last Wednesday, Shawnn was at Jesus House Odessa on 6th Street. He was recorded on video thanking volunteers in the soup kitchen.
“It’s because of organizations like you, the organizations like yours, and the people like you, makes me want to invest in myself,” Shawnn can be heard saying. “Thank you.”
Two days later, just blocks from Jesus House Odessa, Shawnn was shot and killed by another man.
Odessa police say moments before the shooting on Friday night, there was an argument between Shawnn and the shooter outside of a DK convenience store on 10th Street and Dixie Blvd.
26-year-old Isaiah Renteria was arrested on a first-degree murder charge.
“Everyday, you expect Shawnn to walk in and brighten the room,” Pastor Kyker said. “It was hard today.”
Pastor Kyker said Jesus House holds a ‘Trivia Thursday’ event where patrons can win gift cards for a weekend meal. Kyker said when Shawn won, he would often give his prize to someone else.
Pastor Kyker recorded the video of Shawnn giving thanks to the soup kitchen volunteers.
“We usually don’t take videos of guys who do that,” Kyker said. “And it’s just like God told me to do the video… that’s the last time I really got to talk to Shawnn.”
The video is a good example of how Shawnn supported other people. It’s a display of his compassionate character.
“He made such an impact on my life personally,” said Elisha Ramirez, Shawnn’s friend and volunteer at Jesus House. She said, even on her worst day, Shawn’s words helped heal.
“He comes up and he’s like, ‘Hey, thank you for doing what you’re doing and I appreciate you. Now you have a great day.’ And I was like, ‘I needed that,'” Elisha happily recalls.
If there is one thing Pastor Kyker could tell Shawnn right now, it’s this: “Thank you for making me a better person.”
Yourbasin.com reporter, Rob Tooke, spoke with Shawnn’s sister, Wendy Martin, on the phone.
Wendy described her relationship with her baby brother as wonderful. Shawnn would give you “the shirt off his back, the last bit of food off his plate,” she said. In all, he was a kind and caring person.
Shawnn was unique, too. For one, his first name is spelled with two N’s.
“That’s what he always said: ‘I’m a two N Shawnn,’” Wendy happily recalled. “My brother was a character. He was just funny and easygoing and fun-loving.”
At least once a month, Wendy said her brother, Shawnn, would call her. Shawnn talked about loving life and he talked about his dad whenever he could.
To share a little about Shawnn’s youth, he was in a motorcycle accident when he was 13. He was in a coma for two weeks. The accident forced him to re-learn how to walk and talk as an early teen.
Wendy said her brother would go on to earn a degree in computer-aided drafting. He lived in California and in the El Paso area for some time.
Wendy said the suspect “killed the sweetest person in the world.”
“I want to see this person prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law, so that he is not doing this to anyone else, so that he does not destroy anyone else’s family or take another life,” Wendy said.
Shawnn is survived by his sister Wendy and his father Mike.
Wendy kindly asks that anyone interested in supporting Shawnn’s legacy do so by donating to Jesus House Odessa.