John Materna Obituary, Death Cause – A well-liked watermelon vendor who was shot in a neighborhood in northeast Memphis during an attempt to take him has sadly gone away from the injuries he sustained in the shooting two weeks after the incident. On Monday evening, John Materna’s doctors disconnected the machine that kept him alive; a close friend said that he passed away not long after that. He has shown tremendous fortitude in his attempt to triumph over this obstacle. Randall Linn is quoted as saying that “it’s not in the will of God.
Materna, better known as “Red” or the Watermelon Man, was killed on May 15 when he was selling watermelons close to the junction of Homer Street and Wayne Avenue. The incident took place in the neighborhood. Materna was engaged in the sale of watermelons right up to the time of his death. Materna’s ability to sell watermelons at a profit in the Memphis market had brought him prosperity for a good number of years. According to the Memphis Police Department, he was robbed by two people who were seen departing a silver Infiniti that had a paper tag affixed to it that marked “RETIRED.
The tag was seen on the vehicle after the suspects had exited the vehicle. A neighbor who did not like to provide their identity said that the same individuals had also stolen them of their property. Linn said that Materna also had a handgun and responded to their attacks by firing at them. He (Red) fired a shot in response to the threat. Linn added, “Don’t know if he hit anybody going down or the car, but I know he was protecting himself as well as the other neighbor.” Linn also said, “Don’t know if he hit anybody going down or the car.” “I have no doubt that he was looking out for both himself and the other neighbor,” you say.