West of Ninth: David McAtee, in his words

Louisville police and National Guard were called to disperse a group of people at 26th Street and Broadway shortly after midnight Monday. This was not near the protests downtown. It seemed their only crime was breaking the 9 p.m. curfew.

Police claim they were fired upon, and now they claim the shooter was David McAtee, although the videotape they released as proof is unclear.

McAtee was killed where he ran his business, Yaya’s BBQ. He was featured in February 2018 by West of Ninth, a photoblog from Walt and Marshae Smith. This photo and the following interview were conducted at 26th Street and Broadway:

“I’ve been doing this for about 30 years, but I’ve been here for two. This location is the one of the busiest locations in West Louisville. I always wanted to be in this spot, and when the opportunity came, I took it. If I go, somebody else will snatch it. I’ve already built my clientele, and I’m not trying to give up my clientele. I’m here for a reason. Eventually, I’m going to buy this lot and build. I gotta start somewhere, and this is where I’m going to start. It might take another year or two to get to where I’m going, but I’m going to get there.

I live in The Highlands. I moved out of the West. I actually left The West End and moved to Atlanta. I lived there for about 20 years and came back. I’ve only been back in Louisville for about eight years. I had some ups and downs. I’ve been shot and robbed since I’ve been back. I was living a crazy lifestyle, but I had to give it up. I have always been blessed with the skills to cook. I didn’t need anything else. People have to eat every single day, and all I need is my skills.”

West of Ninth began as a Louisville photography blog, westofninth.com, by Russell residents Walt and Shae Smith. With a love for their community, Walt and Shae see the potential of all nine neighborhoods that make West Louisville. Armed with a Nikon DSLR, a recorder and the ability to never meet a stranger, their goal is to shed light on what makes West of Ninth the greatest.