65-Year-Old Louisiana Woman Loses Both her Husband and Last Son to Gun Violence 10 Years After Losing her Youngest Son


The woman on the gurney struggled to breathe. Twelve hours into the new year, in a hail of gunfire in front of their home in New Orleans’ Gentilly neighborhood, her husband and last living son had just been killed.

Now Leslie Lange, 65, was being rolled through the crime scene to an ambulance. Neighbors and relatives watched from behind the yellow plastic ribbon that warned onlookers not to cross.

“We’re all here for you, Leslie!” one woman shouted from the street.

It would be enough trauma to lose a son and husband simultaneously, but Thursday’s double killing — New Orleans’ first homicides of 2015 — marked the second and third family tragedies for this woman, according to relatives, a long-time friend and news stories. Almost 10 years earlier and just two blocks away, Lange’s youngest son, Jeffrey Michael Lange, 29, died the same way.

When history repeated, Desmond Lange, Sr., 64, and Desmonde Lange, Jr., 42, were tinkering on the father’s maroon pick-up truck in the driveway of the family’s home in the 200 block of Warrington Drive. Just around noon, someone arrived in a vehicle, likely traveling south on Warrington, sprayed bullets in their direction then fled, said officer Frank Robertson, a Police Department spokesman.

“It’s a lot of rounds we have out here,” Robertson said. Police had no immediate motive or suspects, and they did not release the identities of the dead, although a relative and a friend did.

Justin Barber, 26, the victims’ nephew and cousin, said the father-son team often worked together fixing cars in their spare time and that he often helped them. Thursday’s task, Barber said, likely was to repair the truck’s brakes.

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Source: NOLA |  Rebecca Catalanello

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