Around 6 a.m. Monday morning, a delivery driver arrived at Roswell, Georgia’s Publix Supermarket, where he came across a gruesome scene. The bodies of two teenagers lay on the ground behind the store. The victims were later identified as 17-year-olds Natalie Henderson and Carter Davis, both of whom were shot in the head.
Although their parents thought them both to be at their respective homes, sleeping when they were discovered, it appears the teens arrived at the store sometime between 2 a.m. and 4 a.m. Although the reason for their rendezvous has not yet been publicized, the two had apparently dated at some point, according to the Roswell Patch, and they had remained friends.
The community is in turmoil by the loss of these two young people. Davis was a member of both the lacrosse and football teams at River Ridge High School, where he would’ve been his senior year on the day his body was found.
“Our team is just devastated,” River Ridge Knights lacrosse coach Mike Britt said to WSB-TV Atlanta. “He, in many ways, was like a coach on the field. In fact, we sometimes joked and called him Coach Carter.”
He was involved in the Fellowship of Christian Athletes and planned to attend a college with an engineering program before his life was cut so drastically short. A vigil was held Tuesday night to celebrate the life of this young man.
Natalie was also a rising star at her high school, where her senior year would’ve begun on August 8. She was a member of the color guard at Roswell High School in addition to being an honor student.
In a post on the Roswell High School band’s Facebook page, Michael Moon, the director of the band, posted, “Tonight we grieve the loss of one of our own. Natalie Henderson was a thriving member of the Color Guard — a fun, smart, talented young woman who was loved by so many. Her absence will be felt by each of us tomorrow and for a long time to come. During this difficult time, we ask that you continue to keep the Henderson family in your thoughts and prayers.”
Grief counselors are available at both schools.
The mystery of the murders has not yet been solved, but police indicate that they believe an ex-boyfriend of Henderson may be involved. Roswell Police executed a search warrant on a home on Gilhams Road, just a few miles from the Publix store.
A tweet posted by WSB-TV’s Ross Cavitt shows police speaking to a young man who lives there. The man in the picture has not yet been identified, nor is it known if he is the perpetrator. Additionally, law enforcement officials have been seen removing items of evidence from this home.
It seems difficult to fathom that these two young lives were just snuffed out, likely over some high school dispute over a relationship. It also leaves many questions that are not yet answered. Who did this and why? These young people seemed to have bright futures ahead of them, and they were just barely starting their lives. How is it they ended up in a grocery store parking lot in the wee hours of the morning, leading to their deaths? What circumstances led up to them being killed? Surely, the answers to these questions will be made known soon enough, but until then, it’s all just left up in the air.
Anyone with information about this tragedy is asked to contact the Roswell Police Department at (770)-640-4100 or Crime Stoppers Atlanta at (404)-577-TIPS.
[Photo by George Frey/Getty Images]