Family hopes reward brings answers in homicide

Wednesday, July 16th 2008, 10:38 pm
By: News 9

By Dave Jordan, NEWS 9

The death of Phillip Gokool shocked his family and the community of which he gave so much to.
The family said they hope $10,000 reward will make someone come forward with information.

"What I want is justice," Phillip Gokool's mother Shirley Gokool said. "I don't want to feel bitterness."

Shirley Gokool, a mother in mourning, was baffled by the death of her youngest child, but not completely surprised.

"I've often said...he would die young," Shirley Gokool said. "He's too good for this world. Good people like Phillip don't live too long."

Since he arrived in Oklahoma City from Trinidad 18 years ago, Phillip has given back to the community that embraced him. He worked as a drug and alcohol counselor for several churches and always extended himself to anyone in need.

"Phillip never really wanted to who you were or what you were doing as long as he could minister and try to help," Phillip Gokool's brother Roland Gokool said.

Phillip Gokool's pastor said he was doing just that the night of July 7. Phillip Gokool was reportedly helping an elderly man clear out his patio. Shortly after, he drove someone to the store, but just after midnight he was found shot to death in the 1500 block of NW 47. Hundreds of people attended his funeral.

"I don't think I've ever had an experience where so many people called me to express sympathy for one person," Pastor Richard Bond of the Church of the Nazarene said.

The church and the family is now hoping that a cash reward would result in the capture of whomever killed Phillip.

The family will hand out flyers Saturday at 6:30 p.m. at the corner of NW 47 and Blackwelder Ave. where Phillip GokooL died. A candlelight vigil will also be held at that location.

Homicide detectives said there were no eyewitnesses and have no suspects at this time.

Anyone with information about Phillip Gokoo's death is asked to call Crimestoppers at 235-7300.