Family remembers 78-year-old woman shot, killed in Myrtle Beach - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

Family remembers 78-year-old woman shot, killed in Myrtle Beach Mall parking lot

It was a year ago - in broad daylight - an afternoon shopping trip to Myrtle Beach Mall ended in gunfire. (Source: WMBF News) It was a year ago - in broad daylight - an afternoon shopping trip to Myrtle Beach Mall ended in gunfire. (Source: WMBF News)

HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - It was a year ago - in broad daylight - an afternoon shopping trip to Myrtle Beach Mall ended in gunfire.
Francis Mae Davis, a mother, a grandmother and great grandmother, was killed that day - but why? And by whom?

There are still so many unanswered questions as authorities continue to investigate and family members struggle to go on with their lives.

Whether she was bowling with her family or riding the bike she just had to have for Christmas, Francis Mae Davis, who was 78 years young, lived life to the fullest. She loved her job as a cashier at Food Lion and she loved to shop. In fact, that's where she was one day before her 79th birthday, with her best shopping buddy, her daughter Shelly Wells. And as was common for "Mae," as she was known, she waited in the car while Shelly ran into JC Penney at the Myrtle Beach Mall. She was known to take a nap while her daughter ran into stores. And Shelly couldn't have been gone for more than 10 minutes, but when she returned, that's when so many lives changed - in an instant.

“I just um, I just um couldn't get her to wake up. And I kept pushing her in the shoulder and she wouldn't wake up. And then that's when I lifted her head and then that's when I saw she had blood down the front of her and her tongue was hanging out of her mouth and that's when I started freaking out,” said Shelly Wells.

Frantic, Shelly called 911.

“I can't get her to wake up, she's got her tongue out of her mouth and blood coming out of her,” Wells told dispatchers.

“The 911 caller is trying to keep me calm and having me put my head on her chest to see if I could hear her heartbeat and I'm like ‘There's no heartbeat,’ and he had me check her pulse and I'm like ‘No.’ And then he's asking me what kind of medication she's taking, and then that's when I - she always kept her purse on the floor by her foot and it was not there,” Wells said.

Mae's purse was missing, but nothing else. Her iPhone, diamond necklace, even her car were all left untouched. Was this a random purse snatching? There had been a purse grab at the mall a few weeks before. But why did the suspect have to shoot her for the mere $10 inside? Why did they have to destroy so many lives? Police are as baffled as Mae's family. They have yet to get any traction in this case.

Mae lived with her daughter Michelle. Michelle can't seem to let go.

“Her clothes are still in her closet, I just can't bring myself to do anything in there,” said Michelle Gagne.

And the pain goes far deeper. Michelle will tell you it's almost debilitating.

“I do not go anywhere by myself. My husband has to be with me or my sister has to be with me. I have anxiety really bad with it. This person has my address. They have her purse, so they have my address. So there's a lot of sleepless nights. I don't sleep very well, I have nightmares,” Gagne said.

So, the suspect took not only Mae's life that day, Shelly and Michelle are now in therapy. And Mae's five grandchildren and seven great grandchildren had to spend their first Christmas last month without her. An entire family, turned upside down, all for $10 that family members say Mae would have handed over without a fight. 

Michelle now stays busy distributing flyers, updating billboards and telling her story through those Value-Pak coupons received in the mail. She even set up a Facebook page seeking justice for her mother.  Michelle's a one-woman army who will admit the questions and the senselessness are almost too much to take.

“What if it was your mom, your sister, your aunt, your cousin? How would you feel? We need closure and I don't think we're going to get it until we find the person that did it,” Gagne said.

Mae's family has filed a wrongful death lawsuit alleging Myrtle Beach Mall did not have operating video surveillance outside the building and that the lack of security in general contributed to her death.

Authorities are offering a $10,000 reward for information leading to an arrest. The family is matching that reward. If you have any information, you're urged to call the Horry County Police Department.

Copyright 2017 WMBF News. All rights reserved.

  • Local NewsLocalMore>>

  • Four people shot late Saturday night in Robeson County

    Four people shot late Saturday night in Robeson County

    Sunday, June 24 2018 3:40 PM EDT2018-06-24 19:40:18 GMT
    (Source: Raycom Media)(Source: Raycom Media)

    ROBESON COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - Four people were shot — and one seriously injured — following an argument near the Sundew gas station in Robeson County late Saturday night, according to Chief Kenneth Sealey. The incident happened around 11:30 p.m. on Saturday. All persons were sent to the hospital and treated for their injuries. Sealey says their is a person of interest but the investigation is still ongoing. Copyright 2018. WMBF News. All rights reserved. 

    More >>

    ROBESON COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - Four people were shot — and one seriously injured — following an argument near the Sundew gas station in Robeson County late Saturday night, according to Chief Kenneth Sealey. The incident happened around 11:30 p.m. on Saturday. All persons were sent to the hospital and treated for their injuries. Sealey says their is a person of interest but the investigation is still ongoing. Copyright 2018. WMBF News. All rights reserved. 

    More >>
  • National Weather Service issues rip current advisory for Horry County beaches

    National Weather Service issues rip current advisory for Horry County beaches

    Sunday, June 24 2018 2:38 PM EDT2018-06-24 18:38:17 GMT
    Source: NOAASource: NOAA

    MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - The National Weather Service has issued a rip current advisory for Horry county until 8 o'clock Sunday evening.  For the full report click here. The statement issued Sunday warns of all "eastern facing beaches in northern Horry". Rip currents occur most often at low spots or breaks in the sandbar and in the vicinity of structures such as groins, jetties and piers, the report says.  Copyright 2018 WMBF News. All rights reserved.

    More >>

    MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - The National Weather Service has issued a rip current advisory for Horry county until 8 o'clock Sunday evening.  For the full report click here. The statement issued Sunday warns of all "eastern facing beaches in northern Horry". Rip currents occur most often at low spots or breaks in the sandbar and in the vicinity of structures such as groins, jetties and piers, the report says.  Copyright 2018 WMBF News. All rights reserved.

    More >>
  • Three arrested in connection to Sunday morning car chase

    Three arrested in connection to Sunday morning car chase

    Sunday, June 24 2018 1:39 PM EDT2018-06-24 17:39:58 GMT
    (Source: Raycom Media)(Source: Raycom Media)
    (Source: Raycom Media)(Source: Raycom Media)
    MARION COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - A car chase Sunday morning led Sheriff's through Florence and Marion counties before landing three suspects in custody according to Marion County Sheriff Brian Wallace.  DeMarcus Mack, 23, of Mint Hill, NC was arrested for resisting arrest as well as unlawful possession of a firearm and a controlled substance for his role in the chase.  Frederick Mack, 42, also of Mint Hill was arrested for unlawful possession of a firearm as well as un...More >>
    MARION COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - A car chase Sunday morning led Sheriff's through Florence and Marion counties before landing three suspects in custody according to Marion County Sheriff Brian Wallace.  DeMarcus Mack, 23, of Mint Hill, NC was arrested for resisting arrest as well as unlawful possession of a firearm and a controlled substance for his role in the chase.  Frederick Mack, 42, also of Mint Hill was arrested for unlawful possession of a firearm as well as un...More >>
  • Trending StoriesTrending StoriesMore>>

  • Warning issued after rattlesnakes found inside pool noodle

    Warning issued after rattlesnakes found inside pool noodle

    Sunday, June 24 2018 9:23 AM EDT2018-06-24 13:23:28 GMT
    Sunday, June 24 2018 9:34 AM EDT2018-06-24 13:34:53 GMT
    An Arizona family grabbed two pool noodles that were up against a wall. That's when a big snake popped out of one of them and they found several babies inside. (Source: KNXV/CNN)An Arizona family grabbed two pool noodles that were up against a wall. That's when a big snake popped out of one of them and they found several babies inside. (Source: KNXV/CNN)

    An Arizona family grabbed two pool noodles that were up against a wall. That's when a big snake popped out of one of them and they found several babies inside. 

    More >>

    An Arizona family grabbed two pool noodles that were up against a wall. That's when a big snake popped out of one of them and they found several babies inside. 

    More >>
  • Transgender woman says she was harassed over restroom at restaurant

    Transgender woman says she was harassed over restroom at restaurant

    Sunday, June 24 2018 11:05 AM EDT2018-06-24 15:05:26 GMT
    Sunday, June 24 2018 11:17 AM EDT2018-06-24 15:17:54 GMT
    After washing her hands Clymer says the attendant and manager said it was DC law that a person must only use the restroom that matches with the gender on their identification card. (Source: WJLA/CNN)After washing her hands Clymer says the attendant and manager said it was DC law that a person must only use the restroom that matches with the gender on their identification card. (Source: WJLA/CNN)

    After washing her hands Clymer says the attendant and manager said it was DC law that a person must only use the restroom that matches with the gender on their identification card

    More >>

    After washing her hands Clymer says the attendant and manager said it was DC law that a person must only use the restroom that matches with the gender on their identification card

    More >>
  • Plane crashes behind Taco Bell in Alex City

    Plane crashes behind Taco Bell in Alex City

    Sunday, June 24 2018 4:21 PM EDT2018-06-24 20:21:08 GMT
    A fire crew is at the scene of the plane crash in Alex City. (Source: Alex City Fire Department)A fire crew is at the scene of the plane crash in Alex City. (Source: Alex City Fire Department)

    A plane crashed in Alex City Sunday morning, according to the Alex City Fire Department. 

    More >>

    A plane crashed in Alex City Sunday morning, according to the Alex City Fire Department. 

    More >>
Powered by Frankly