Piedmont mother honors son murdered on New Year’s Eve

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GREENSBORO, N.C. -- In the Alston household, New Year's Eve was a time for celebrating and creating memories with family. But since 2011, the day has been a somber one.

Teresa Herbin remembers that she was cooking in her kitchen when she said goodbye to her son for the last time.

"I told him, 'Go out. Enjoy yourself. Be safe. I love you,'" she said.

Less than an hour later, police knocked on her door, telling her that her son, Walter Alston Jr., had been shot a block away from their Broad Avenue home. He died in the hospital shortly after.

"That night I asked God to give me peace throughout the situation, because I knew what I had to do. And he's kept me. And he's still keeping me," Herbin said.

Three years later, Herbin said she's healing, but will never fully recover.

"Some days I have good days and some days are bad," she said. "I don't think you can ever heal the hole in your heart for your child, because it's out of order."

Herbin says she has not been able to get closure partially because the man accused in her son's murder, Eddi Horton, still has not faced trial.

"We can't have closure until the judicial system do their part," she said. "It's been three years now and still no definite date for the case."

Every year since Alston's murder, Herbin has organized a walk -- from her home on Broad Avenue to the spot, a block away, where her son was murdered on Tuscaloosa Street.

"It's a sadness. And it's also a celebration," she said.

Herbin says it's a way to honor the memory of her son, who was an outgoing, lovable guy.

"He had many, many friends," she said. "He didn't meet a stranger."

Herbin says the walk attracts as many as 100 people. Many of her son's friends still maintain close contact with the family, including Pete Manuel, who lives just steps away from where Alston was killed.

"Every time we come out of our door, it's always on our mind," he said. "Every day, whether you're going to work, school, or whatever you're going to do, when you step out of the house and you look down the street where it happened, it just always plays in your mind."

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