KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — For the people who loved Marco Green, so much is out of their control.
They have no answers as to why he was shot down Oct. 8 in south Kansas City. They can only wait on whatever comes of a police investigation of which they know nothing.
But they can finish his house.
They can complete this home that the 28-year-old carpenter intended for his four children and their mother.
"This house is everything," Charlotte Busby, the mother of his children, said. She blinked back tears last Sunday as a crew of people was back at work in the house.
"This house was him," she said. "He was here every day."
Their 7-year-old daughter, Lamia Green, stood nearby in what will be the first house she can call her own — with a bedroom just for her and her older sister.
"The walls are going to be pink and purple," she said.
Oh really? Busby smiled. They hadn't talked paint colors yet, but that sounded like a good plan, she said.
"Pink is her favorite color, and purple is her older sister's favorite," Busby said.
The Kansas City Star reported Marco Green had purchased the deteriorated house from a family friend in 2015 and was knuckling down and rehabbing it for his family, his older brother, Marcus Green said.
Their sister, Destiny Summers, called up a picture of Marco on her phone that showed him at work inside the family room in a house. At that time the house that had neither dry wall nor floorboards. It had been severely fire damaged. The back third of the structure would have to be completely torn down.
Marco, who worked in construction, was determined to set up a house of his own for his family, and put an end to what had been a series of moves between rental properties and other people's homes.
"This home was the cornerstone of all his future plans," his friend, Chuck Villanueva said. "He and Charlotte and the kids were going to be here."
He and Green were looking forward to next summer when they figured the finished house would be their home, where they'd hang out, from where they'd come and go on trips.
Then came the early morning of Oct. 8 when police received reports of five or six gunshots outside the East Hills Village Apartments.
Police found Green in the parking lot, lying on the ground with fatal wounds.
He had friends who lived at the apartments, but his family doesn't know why he was there that morning. Police have offered no new information on the investigation. No arrests have been made.
His house will help people remember Marco Green, his brother said. And maybe talking about it will help spur witnesses to come forward and help police investigating his murder.
"If you know something and do not speak up, you're part of the problem," Marcus Green said.
"It'll never stop," he said about gun violence that has fueled a toll of homicides in Kansas City that has reached 130 in 2017. "It'll get worse and worse."
Last Sunday was gray and chilly, and the work crew eagerly anticipated a new furnace and hot water heater that would be coming into the house this week. Busby, who has been learning home construction on the job since Marco's death, was helping put up dry wall in her daughters' bedroom.
Within the next two weeks, Marcus Green said, the house would be ready enough for the family to move in while the work continues.
Even in the first days of shock over his brother's death, Marcus Green said his family and friends — many of them involved in construction — knew they would have to finish his house for him.
"There was no debate," he said.
Busby carved out the slots in dry wall to make room for electrical sockets and light switches. She helped press the boards against studs and power-screwed them in, with the rich smell of sawdust in the air.
Marco's house is helping her release stress, she said.
More simply, Marcus Green said, "It's love."