Jennifer Hudson Still Not Able to Enter Home Where Her Mother, Brother were Killed

November 3, 2008

hudson-mother-sister.jpgAs Jennifer Hudson stayed sequestered in her grief Sunday night and other family members attended a memorial service for three murdered relatives at her childhood church, New York friends told us Hudson has not been able to go inside the home where the tragic killings took place.

Shari Sweat, a cousin, told the assembled mourners at Pleasant Gift Memorial Baptist Church that Hudson’s mother Darnell Donerson, or “Doll” as she was known, had voted just before she was fatally shot with her son Jason. Their bodies were found Oct. 24 at Donerson’s house, and that of Hudson’s 7-year-old nephew Julian King three days later in Jason Hudson’s vehicle.

“Doll refused to be left out of this historical moment in this nation, and before she left these shores she cast her vote,” Sweat said.

Julian’s young cousins sang “He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands,” and the child’s second-grade teacher read from a classmate’s essay: “Julian was smart. I’m sad he didn’t get to be President of the United States.”

Sean Howard, a Chicago city official who accompanied family members to identify Julian, told the heartbroken church group, “When Jennifer and her family walked in, Jennifer was a pillar in that room. You have a true leader in your family in Jennifer.”

Hudson and her sister Julia, the boy’s mother and estranged wife of the suspect, William Balfour, were expected at the private funeral scheduled for today.

Hudson’s friend and mentor Andre Leon Talley, who like Hudson brought himself from poverty to stardom, in his case in the fashion world, told us that he and his boss at Vogue have reached out to her as she mourns.

“We’ve talked constantly,” Talley told us. “I’ve sent her many e-mails; I’ve sent her my support, and so has Anna Wintour.  And she just says thank you, thank you, thank you.  She wants everyone, all her fans, to know how much their support has meant to her. And she’s going to be all right. Jennifer has faith in God. They’re just praying, every day, every minute, for the strength to get through this.  And she will – she’s a very strong girl.”

Still, Hudson, who had the world in her hands as she rose from American Idol to winning an Oscar for “Dreamgirls,”  cannot yet bear to go inside the scene of the crime, Talley said.

“I believe she went back just once, to the gate, but didn’t go inside,” the style arbiter told us. “Right now she’s at an undisclosed location.”

Talley will no doubt try to see her this week. He told us at Bette Midler’s New York Restoration Project benefit ball that he is headed to Chicago to work at a phone bank for Barack Obama in the election that was so important to Jennifer Hudson’s mother.

Source: New York Daily News

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