By a strange twist of fate, all three Kennedy brothers ended up homeless.
Only one is left.
The other two were killed while living on the streets.
Brian C. Kennedy, 56, was identified today as one of two homeless men shot in a wooded area behind a bank in Tarpon Springs Monday afternoon.
Kennedy died. The other man, Larry J. Schuff, 54, remains in critical condition at Bayfront Medical Center, said Capt. Jeff Young of the Tarpon Springs Police Department.
So far, there are no suspects.
Kennedy’s brother, Craig Kennedy, 49, was killed Feb. 25, 2008, just after midnight, outside St. Vincent de Paul’s Center of Hope Transitional Living Program, where many of the St. Petersburg’s homeless population congregates.
Craig had addressed another homeless man using a derogatory homophobic term, and the man punched him once in the face, knocking Kennedy backwards. He hit his head on the concrete sidewalk and never regained consciousness, according to a St. Petersburg Police report.
Police identified another homeless man, Lane Edward Fogle, now 42, who went by the nickname “Mike” — after boxer Mike Tyson, because Fogle reportedly liked to fight people and knock them out — as a suspect in Craig Kennedy’s death.
Fogle was charged with manslaughter, but a jury found him guilty of a lesser crime, misdemeanor battery.
Erin Kennedy, the last surviving brother, is living on the streets in the Lakeland area. He learned of his brother Brian’s death today.
“They knew about my other brother Craig that got pushed down at St. Vincent de Paul,” said Erin Kennedy, 61.
He was somewhat surprised to hear about his brother Brian’s death.
Brian had been assaulted before, once with a baseball bat. But he was a reasonably peaceful fellow, Kennedy said.
“I can’t imagine Brian doing anything to provoke anyone to shoot him,” Erin said. “He wasn’t a fighter. He didn’t start fights or anything.”
“He wasn’t into drugs. I know he drank his beer.”
Brian Kennedy has been in and out of jail on open container charges over the last eight years, according to Pinellas County court records.
His friend, Schuff, who was also shot, has a similar criminal background and has been trespassed from several Tarpon Springs businesses.
“Our homeless outreach officers are familiar with them and our officers on the road are familiar with them,” said Young. “We’ve had numerous dealings with each individual.”
Erin Kennedy said his brother had been homeless for a while.
“I haven’t been over there, so I don’t know the way it was going,” he said. “It does not sound like he was doing too good.”
Kennedy was once married and once worked for a railroad in Michigan, his brother said. He received a payment after he was laid off and bought a sailboat, but eventually his life took a turn for the worse, Erin Kennedy said.
Today, Kennedy left a telephone message with his sister in Oklahoma, where their 87-year-old mother also lives, to tell them what happened to Brian.
He said he was worried how their mother would take the news. She was recently diagnosed with cancer, he said.