Baltimore Teen, Michael Mayfield, Who was Mistakeningly Shot and Killed, Remembered as a Leader and a Peace Maker

Michael Mayfield with Dara Calhoun, school psychologist and co-coordinator of Edmondson-Westside’s peer mediation program. (Courtesy Photo)
Michael Mayfield with Dara Calhoun, school psychologist and co-coordinator of Edmondson-Westside’s peer mediation program. (Courtesy Photo)

Michael Mayfield had only played the baritone horn for about a year as a member of the Edmondson-Westside High School marching band. But he took to the instrument so quickly that of the two scholarships he had been offered by different colleges, one was for band.

Mayfield was murdered on April 16, gunned down as he left the home of his uncle in West Baltimore, a senseless act believed by those who knew him to be a case of mistaken identity. As his experience with the baritone horn would suggest, Mayfield leaves behind a legacy of excellence, remembered by members of the Edmondson-Westside community for his leadership, service to others, and a commitment to the non-violent resolution of conflicts.

“Everything he did he was the best at,” said Dara Calhoun, a school psychologist at Edmondson-Westside and co-coordinator of the peer mediation program in which Mayfield served as a student mediator.

Reading the list of Mayfield’s accomplishment, it is hard to argue with the sentiment. In addition to the band scholarship, Mayfield was considering another scholarship offer to play baseball, a sport in which he had excelled as a starting pitcher.

Mayfield was also the drilling ceremony commander for the Junior ROTC program at Edmondson-Westside, and had recently helped lead his fellow members to five trophies in a city-wide JRTOC competition.

A talented musician, star athlete, JROTC commander, and a peer mediator, Mayfield was also a student representative in the Edmondson Westside student government, and a youth leader with the Inner Harbor Project, “an organization dedicated to making the Inner Harbor a safe and inclusive public space for Baltimoreans, tourists, and businesses,” according to its website.

As a peer mediator, Mayfield would often identify conflicts among his classmates and take it upon himself to help bring about a peaceful resolution without the need for prodding from adults or school officials.

“He had just a willingness and a desire to help others. He always stood up for the underdog,” said Calhoun, who had grown so close to Michael that she affectionately referred to him as ‘son,’ while he referred to her as ‘ma.’

For Cheo Thomas, a senior at Edmondson-Westisde and a fellow JROTC member, Mayfield was “A person who was always there to help.

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Source: Afro.com | Roberto Alejandro

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