Family of man killed in Southwest Philadelphia stabbing attack speaks out

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The family of a man killed Tuesday afternoon in a stabbing spree say they are trying to make sense of something others say has no sense.

The family of a man killed Tuesday afternoon in a stabbing spree say they are trying to make sense of something others say has no sense.

Their loved one, 31-year-old Nathan Ackison, was the random victim of a deranged man high on drugs with a long history of arrests in Philadelphia.

"To us, it's hard to understand," said Laurel Urena, victim's sister.

For Urena and her mother, Wendy Swiger, it's not just hard, but very hard to understand why her brother is dead. Why he would be stabbed and killed by a man he didn't even know and for no apparent reason.

"I wrestle with the grief for my son, whom I loved," said Wendy Swiger, victim's mother. "But I don't harbor any hate."

Ackison is one of three men who were randomly attacked by a man with a knife on Tuesday in Southwest Philadelphia.

Residents say 55-year-old Ronald Stanley was high on the synthetic PCP drug known as "Wet" when he attacked. The two other victims survived.



"As far as I'm concerned, he was basically a zombie, a non-entity walking the earth with nothing in him," said Swiger.

Ackison had converted to the Muslim faith and was laid to rest Thursday in Upper Darby. He leaves behind a wife, who is pregnant and due in August.

Swiger and her daughter had been warned not to go to the place where Ackison died, that it was dangerous there. But they went anyway to pour perfume oil on the spot where he fell dead.

"I thought I want to anoint this place where he died, I want to anoint it and bless it for good so that it's not a place of evil," said Swiger.

Stanley, the alleged attacker, had a revolving door through the criminal justice system. He had 31 prior arrests, dating back over four decades including charges ranging from murder, robbery, theft, drugs and assault.

Something that made Ackison's relatives wonder what he was doing on the streets.

"He's a piece of dirt, piece of dust on the ground as far as I'm concerned," said Swiger. "I mean I hope he has a soul and I hope God can get to him, but I think not."

A GoFundMe account posted on Swiger's Facebook page has raised more than $7,000 for Ackison's widow, Rashonna, and her unborn child.

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philadelphia newsstabbingmuslimsSouthwest Philadelphia
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