Widow of road-rage shooting victim speaks out

-
 
 
The family of a man killed in a road-rage shooting in San Leandro is speaking out.
 
Leilani Millard says she's at a loss as to why someone resorted to deadly violence, killing Wardell Taliaferro, her husband of 17 years.
 
"I don't know what he did to make them so upset, you know, for them to decide to just fire a weapon and kill him," she said.
 
"He came across sometimes as a little rough, you know, to other people, but once you get to know him, he was a good guy," she said.
 
Millard was with their kids in the back seat of the family's Suburban when shots rang out Sunday night on Marina Boulevard in San Leandro.
 
Three-month-old Luke is far too young to understand what happened.
 
"His son was everything to him," said Taliaferro's brother, Joe Toro. "And you could see a change in him. He wanted to change."
 
But Taliaferro's older son Xavier, who turned 5 a day after the shooting, is still waiting for his dad to come home. 
 
"He seen everything, and it was horrible because he doesn't know," said Millard. "He says his dad's dead, but he don't grasp it. He don't know. "
 
Millard says someone was tailgating them near the Flyers gas station at Marina Boulevard and Merced Street about 9:45 p.m. Sunday. Her husband exchanged a few words with the driver..
 
"He was getting a little irritated with the car, whatever, and at the light, he asked the car, 'What's up?' "
 
But a short while later, a second car pulled up, and Taliaferro argued with that driver as well. Someone from that car opened fire.
 
"And it caught him in the head and neck," said Millard, crying. "There was no way to save him. I tried. I got in the car and tried to drive him to the hospital but it didn't work."
 
She said, "I was just hoping it would be over with, the confrontation, you know. And that it was going to blow by, you know it was going to a little bit of road rage and whatever. But i didn't expect him to get killed."
 
Taliaferro's extended family is now struggling to fill the void.
 
"I'm really still trying to understand it myself," Toro said. "It's really hard. Road rage is that ridiculous that it takes lives."
 
Toro's wife, Stefanie Toro, said Taliaferro was known as a "gentle soul with a huge heart" who "loved to flaunt his skills on the stove and on the grill."
 
She said, "It's heartbreaking that our nieces and nephews have to grow up without their father and our family can no longer hear his voice or hug him again...He was taken from our family in a violent manner, and his life was shortened. This is the pain that our family will live with forever."
 
Millard is asking the public to come forward with tips and for the shooter to surrender.
 
"Just do the right thing," she said. "I know people don't like to turn themselves in, but you took my son's father. He's not going to have a dad. We miss him so much."  
 
 
A GoFundMe account has been set up for the family. It can be found here.
 
 

 

 

 

Up Next:


  • Popular

  • Recent

Stories You May Be Interested In - Includes Advertiser Stories