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Native community mourns death of baby, young man

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Gomer Thompson offers a prayer
Gomer Thompson stops to offer a prayer at the scene of Sunday's shooting in south Minneapolis. His younger brother Gustav D. Christianson and a baby boy (no relation) were killed while sitting in a vehicle next to a park.
Doualy Xaykaothao | MPR News

Across from a small park in south Minneapolis, a makeshift memorial marks the location where a baby boy and a 20-year-old Minneapolis man were killed on Sunday. 

Gustav Christianson, 20, was working to improve his life before it got cut short, said Gomer Thompson, his older brother. 

"For a Native American man, growing up in the South Minneapolis streets, it's a struggle out here, for everybody. There's just some things you can't avoid," Thompson said. "He's a good kid all around. ... He was trying to get on the right path, you know."

Thompson said his brother recently got out of prison after serving time for assault. A sister said Christianson was a former gang member with a group called the Native Mob. 

While in jail, according to Thompson, Christianson got his high school degree and just finished treatment for substance abuse. 

Gomer Thompson (right) and James Cross
Gomer Thompson, right, says his little brother Gustav Christianson was recently released from prison, and was a "good kid all-around, working on his life, to get on the right path." His uncle, James Cross, left, says Gus was a "kid trying to find his path after losing his mother and older sister."
Doualy Xaykaothao | MPR News

No one had been arrested as of Monday night in connection with the shooting.

Neighbors say the young man was in a vehicle with the baby sitting in the back seat, waiting for a woman who apparently was visiting a relative in the neighborhood. Christianson was pronounced dead at the scene, and the baby died at a hospital. 

MPR News' Doualy Xaykaothao visited the scene on Monday when a group of Native Americans held a prayer service.

Use the audio player above to hear Xaykaothao's full story.