Hanaan Shahin said in a statement that she wants justice and prays for her peace following the killing of her 6-year-old son, Wadea Al-Fayoume
The mother of a slain Chicago boy who was allegedly killed by the family's landlord early October in an anti-Muslim attack has been released from the hospital and is honoring her son's memory.
Hanaan Shahin, 32, was released from the hospital less than two weeks after her landlord Joseph Czuba allegedly attacked her and her son Wadea Al-Fayoume in a stabbing spree, killing the six-year-old in what authorities have alleged was a hate attack connected to the war between Israel and Hamas.
"He was my best friend,” Shahin has said about her son following her release, according to a statement from the Chicago branch of the Council of American-Islamic Relations (CAIR).
Ahmed Rehab, Executive Director of CAIR-Chicago said Shahin reminisced about Wadea, his sense of humor and how the young boy “cared for the planet,” per the statement.
Rehab added that Wadea was a smart child who also liked to join his mother in her prayer. Shahin is finding peace in “remembering Wadea as an angel on earth, and knowing that he is now an angel in heaven,” according to the statement.
The Will County Sheriff’s Office said earlier this month that Czuba, 71, of Plainfield Township, was charged with first-degree murder, attempted first-degree murder, two counts of hate crime and aggravated battery with a deadly weapon.
It's not clear if he has entered a plea, and PEOPLE has not been able to reach his lawyer.
“Detectives were able to determine that both victims in this brutal attack were targeted by the suspect due to them being Muslim and the on-going Middle Eastern conflict involving Hamas and the Israelis,” said the sheriff’s office at the time.
In the statement released on Tuesday, Rehab said Shahin has made a speedy recovery that “stunned” her medical attendants, given the nature and extent of her attack.
Shahin, who works as a caregiver for seniors, inquired about Czuba’s wife’s well-being while she was hospitalized, the statement says. She has called for justice and for others to join her to “pray for peace," and does not harbor anger about the attack.
In a tribute on a fundraising platform, Wadea was remembered for all that he loved and enjoyed doing.
“Wadea was not just any child; he was a bright and energetic young boy who loved basketball and soccer,” read a Launchgood fundraiser that was started immediately after the killing. “He liked swings and coloring. He loved his family and his friends, he loved life.”
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