ATLANTA — A father, husband, and community hero, who was always helping people and saving lives across Atlanta, by giving of himself to those without, is now another Atlanta homicide victim.
Muhammad Abdus-Salaam, 42, who everyone called “Dooly,” was shot in his back, outside his home on Camilla Street SW, possibly for his car.
Now, his family is trying to carry on his legacy of selfless service to the hungry and homeless, and praying that anyone who knows something will help Atlanta police figure out who killed him.
Family members are also angry and frustrated, on top of their grief.
They are asking why an Atlanta Police Department security camera, which is installed on a pole directly next to where Muhammad was shot to death, was pointed away, capturing only blurry images of the killers’ car as it sped down the street.
PHOTOS: Remembering Muhammad Abdus-Salaam
“This is unacceptable,” said Muhammad’s brother, Ajib Abdus-Salaam, pointing at the camera.
Muhammad Abdus-Salaam was a devout man of faith, a husband, and the father of two young girls.
Atlanta Police say on Oct. 7, four men drove up to Muhammad as he was unloading groceries from the trunk of his car.
At least one of the men got out and shot him in the back.
“He never even saw it coming,” Ajib said. “Five shots, three hit him.”
Ajib said Muhammad dropped his car keys and they fell into the trunk of his car.
He said Muhammad’s attackers, possibly wanting to steal his car, couldn’t find the keys. They sped away.
Police say their car is possibly a Kia or a Nissan.
“So they didn’t even get his car,” Ajib said. “Senseless.”
Muhammad’s brothers Ajib and Hassan, and his cousin Mohammed Azizuddin, cherish him and their memories of him.
“He could uplift a down spirit,” Mohammed said. “It was quite obvious, from an early age, that he had a gift. He had the charisma. He was the type of person that would go to a place and make it better… He was always about helping people, never about hurting people.”
“Dooly” would set up tables at one location or another in Atlanta every Sunday, and grill fresh food, and feed those in need.
“And he wouldn’t charge them a dime,” Ajib said. “And all because he loved to serve people.”
“He was always helping people get jobs, helping people get places to live,” Hassan said. “He was such a giver. For somebody to take somebody like this away from us, it leaves us with a huge void.”
Sunday morning, Dooly’s family set up tables at Oakland City Park, and served food, for free, just as “Dooly’ would have been doing.
Ajib asked him once why he volunteered for the community the way he did.
“I said, ‘You don’t even charge nobody to do this.’ He said, ‘I just love to see smiles on people’s faces.’”
The family speaks of their commitment to keeping his legacy of service alive and active.
Friends have set up an online fundraiser to help support his children while adding $10,000 to the $2,000 Crime Stoppers Atlanta reward in the case.
“We know that Allah is in control of everything,” Ajib said, “but we still want to continue and we want justice for Muhammad.”
Justice for their brother and cousin, father, husband, and community hero.