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Man Shot Dead At 50 Yard Line Was Working Security: 'I Can't Let This Go'

By Joe Ward | March 30, 2016 5:11am
 Natali Wright stands next to a memorial for her fiance, Andrew Love, who was killed while working at 50 Yard Line in Greater Grand Crossing.
Natali Wright stands next to a memorial for her fiance, Andrew Love, who was killed while working at 50 Yard Line in Greater Grand Crossing.
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DNAinfo/Joe Ward

GREATER GRAND CROSSING — Natali Wright said it's been hard to be at her Englewood home since Friday, when her fiancé Andrew Love was fatally shot while working security at a nearby bar.

So she went on Tuesday afternoon to a memorial for Lowe outside the 50 Yard Line bar in Greater Grand Crossing, where he was working when a fight escalated and shots rang out in the long-time neighborhood tavern.

"I can't even go home," Wright said of the house she shared for two years with Love. "All of his stuff is there."

Love was shot at 1:40 a.m. Friday after trying to break up a fight inside the bar in the 7500 block of South Michigan Avenue. Despite early reports, Love's friends and witnesses to the shooting say Love was not the intended target and was only doing his job when he was shot.


A shooter opened fire in the bar, police said, fatally striking Love and seriously wounding a 32-year-old man. A 29-year-old woman was injured after she was struck by a car while trying to flee the scene of the shooting, police said.

Police say they took someone into custody in connection with the shooting, but that the person was released after questioning, said Officer Thomas Sweeney, Chicago Police spokesman.

Love was working security when a fight broke out inside the bar, co-workers said. According to Wright and others who were there that night, Love was working to kick out one of the people involved in the fight when the man turned around and opened fire.

"He was always the first one trying to break up a fight — he's a big guy," Wright said. "That guy who was armed, he just turned around and started shooting."

A makeshift memorial now adorns a fence next to the 50 Yard Line, and the bar has changed its marquee to say "RIP Drew," as Love was called by friends.

A manager at the bar said the 50 Yard Line will not reopen until Love is laid to rest. He said Love had worked at the bar for about five years.

"I'm not letting this go," said Lewis, a manager at the bar who asked to only be identified by his first name. "I miss him. I can't really sleep."

Lewis stopped to talk to Wright and her family outside the bar Tuesday. He said he believes police should not have released the man that had been taken into custody.

Lewis said the bar and the eyewitnesses there will work to make sure charges are brought in the case.

"He did something extremely stupid and reckless," Lewis told Wright, referring to the man police had questioned but let go. "He had the opportunity to leave. We're going to make sure he pays for what he's done."

Police would not comment on Lewis' claims.

Wright said Love had just finished up getting his bachelor's degree in criminal justice and that he had dreams of being a juvenile probation officer. She said Love grew up in foster housing but had recently reunited with his mother.

"He was a great guy. He never drank, never smoked," she said. "I don't know [how to handle this]."

50 Yard Line has been a staple of the Greater Grand Crossing community for over 25 years. The bar, owned by an elderly neighborhood couple, is known for its weekly Jazz and dancing nights.

Lewis said the bar has never had a problem like this before. He said the owners decided to close for the time being while they mourn a beloved coworker.

"We want to show respect to the family," Lewis said. "We're a family business, and we know the community is mourning."

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