September 14, 2003 by

Yetunde Price


Categories: Misc.

Yetunde Price, the oldest sister and personal assistant of tennis champions Venus and Serena Williams, was murdered on Sept. 14. She was 31.

Price was sitting with a man inside an SUV in the Compton neighborhood of Los Angeles when they became involved in an altercation with local residents. Witnesses say between six and 20 gunshots were heard; police later found an assault rifle at the scene. Shot several times in the chest, she was pronounced dead at a hospital.

Price and her four sisters grew up in Compton, a crime-ridden community known for its rampant gang activity. When Venus and Serena became professional tennis players, the family moved to Florida. Price, however, moved to Corona, Calif., about 40 miles from Compton, where she became a registered nurse and the part-owner of a beauty salon.

[Update – March 22, 2006: Edward Maxfield, 25, pleaded no contest on March 18 to voluntary manslaughter in the shooting death of Yetunde Price. The plea was entered on the day his third trial was scheduled to begin.]

[Update – April 6, 2006: Edward Maxfield, 25, was sentenced to 15 years in prison for the slaying of Yetunde Price. Prosecutors said Maxfield fired about 11 bullets from an assault rifle shortly before midnight in Sept. 2003 in order to protect a drug house; one of the bullets struck Price in the head. Maxfield pleaded no contest, which amounts to an admission of guilt under California law, to manslaughter last month. Juries deadlocked on their verdict in two previous trials. A murder charge against a second man, Aaron Hammer, was dismissed after the first trial. Hammer was accused of firing a gun during the shooting but authorities concluded that it did not cause Price’s fatal wound.]

47 Responses to Yetunde Price

  1. Ellen Brinkman

    Dear Family
    Last monday when I woke up I heard the bad news. I thougt why, why kill somebody when you have an argument, why to use a gun than words. This world is going under because of these kind of insame people. As a big Williamssisters fan I want to support you in this difficult time and I hope you will soon back at you’re feet.
    A Lot Of Greetings From Ellen And GOD BLESS!!

  2. Nicole Sanders

    Now more than ever the world, the fans who love you and the critics are going to be watching you to see if you retain the maturity and poise you have demonstrated and young, intelligent, vibrant and strong black women.
    WhatI would say , is to ignor that. Be who you are but take this time to grieve, remember, celebrate your sisters life and solidify the love and committment you have for your mother, father and remaining siblings.
    Know that my heart aches for you, not because I am a fan,but because, I too have lost someone very dear to me and understand all to well the grief and pain you are experiencing.
    This was an unneccesarry tragedy , but do not let it serve to weaken your resolve and your inner and outer beauty.
    I am so sorry that this happened. My prayers are with you and your family. Take this time to be a blessing to each other and cover each other and your nieces and/or nephews with as much love as you can. They especially need it now.

  3. Jean Hamilton

    To The Price-William family,
    I was deeply sadden and shocked to hear the news of your sister’s death. Please accept my heartfelt condolances. It is so tragic that we live in a world so cruel. Please keep the faith and remember God has a plan no man can understand. May God Bless and keep you in your time of sorrow
    Jean Hamilton

  4. Edwina Bryant

    My sympathy goes out to the Williams/Price family. Yetunde was their rock. I myself have experienced the loss of a “rock” and you realize that they are irreplacible….Stay strong family…I would also like to address the media’s term half sister. Yetunde was their SISTER, their was nothing half about her. By constantly repeating half, you somehow try to trivialize her worth and importance in her family. The bright side of this is your pen will never be able to distroy the bond that this family has.

  5. Anonymous

    I just wanted to say that when I heard about Yetunde on the song dedicated to her by The Game, I just wanted to know what happened and when I did, I was amazed at what people can do to people. I really think that whoever did it should have thought twice.

  6. Ryan Downing

    The Gang violence needs to stop, I send my deepest sympathies. my mother tells me that in her day that gang violence was some ” West Coast Bull” and that point was just proven
    Rest In Peace
    Yetunde Price
    Ryan J. Downing
    New Jersey

  7. Kelly

    This is all some bull. I wish that people would look a little deeper and stop looking at what is in front of your face and taking it at face value. You sell yourself short. It;s more to the story surrounding her death and no one want’s to know the real. I don’t think her death was intentional but when she choose to surround herself with known gang members and call him her boyfriend then she put herself in the line of fire. These young ladies need to be more careful who they choose to lay up with. The person on trial for her murder is not the killer. It’s a shame that society will settle for whatever the media say. A young black man is fighting for his life because the system wants to railroad him to to hurry and put a close to this case instead of doing a more intenses investigation. Justice will be served when the real killer who is also in jail for a triple murder is charged with this one also. If they would have kept him the first time they arrested him for this murder he wouldn’t have been able to kill those other 3 people.

  8. nene

    why would someone come on here and type things like that when this family has lost someone that they love deeply. to kelly who posted that email, you really need to have some respect. what makes you think her family wants to read that?no matter what that young lady did or who she was friends with, does not give you the right to say those kind of things. but anyway i just wanna say that i am sorry for your lost and i just pray for you . i would like the media to please stop with the half sister crap. she was not their half sister, she was their SISTER. i know how it feels tolose someone close to you and it is hard, but you just have to talk to god and just tell god to bless you and get you through it.

  9. Phillip Marquez

    I have to agree with the message written by Kelly on April 29, 2005 04:28 AM
    I wish that people would look a little deeper…(There’s) more to the story surrounding her death and no one want’s to know the real. I don’t think her death was intentional but when she choose to surround herself with known gang members and call him her boyfriend then she put herself in the line of fire.
    I just gotta say true to that.
    I saw “The GAME” video dedication also and wanted to get more details on the actual story.
    Bottom line…she this setting out of all her possible alternatives. One alternative the Williams family was trained to observe was..”Do not be misled. Bad associations spoil useful habits” – 1 Corinthians 15:33
    31-year-old Yetunde Price, died by not paying attention to that admonition. Don’t make bad people your “friends” because their problems will become yours.

  10. Phillip

    The previous should have read as follows:
    Bottom line…she CHOSE this setting (COMPTON) out of all her possible alternatives. One alternative the Williams family was trained to observe was..”Do not be misled. Bad associations spoil useful habits” – 1 Corinthians 15:33

  11. a close friend

    Gangs should be stopped they kill inocent people
    Yetunde Price r.i.p.
    are hearts are there for you.
    my are thoughts be with the loving family and friends you were there for me now im there for you

  12. ashley

    Yall need to quite wit all that i think kelly is rigth but i think nene is also right because u cant blame everything-maby it was just her time to go and it really int nin of nobody’s business who she was layin up wit or who she call her(boy) friend so kelly shoudnt have but that out there
    p,s Cant nobody predict they future or when its time to go.R.I.P Yetunde Price.

  13. kadeem baird

    i’m sorry for the death of Yetunde Price that is so hurtful that someone would kill someone over an arguement and i also want to thank game for dedicating the song dreams to Yetunde Price that is wonderful i love u all god bless!
    Yetunde Price

  14. bebe

    My heart is with the family.Like in Nas song “Just a Moment” he states even though life must go one wwe still miss yall. I know what it feels when someone you love is gone and I still haven’t got over it even though it was 3 years ago. Just remember the happy times and you will feel a little better.

  15. jo

    Venus, gotta tell you, I was cheering Lindsay on today, but you know what girl, you had a great game today, it was a pleasure to watch, and a pleasure to see your strength coming through, after the bad couple of years you, and you entire family, have dragged yourselves through, it’s nice to see your persistent, faith and belief in yourselves has won the day (and Wimbledon ) I know its tough, but life does go on, as you proved today, God bless you and all your family

  16. millie

    i know that has past but you will never forget , it’s been 6 years since i lost somebody an every day seem like the first day but yall keep strong and their will always be haters and silly as people but you have to look over them.
    i will always pray for yall

  17. yetunde

    its so sad to hear and see an hero go,a name sake 4 dat matter hmmmmmmm,short of words but may yetunde’s soul rest in perfect peace and to those who murdered her,you’all should not die again ok .

  18. cocoa

    i am very sorry for your loss. i can’t possibly imagine what you have and are going through. i wish the best for you and your family. god bless yetunde’s soul.

  19. Mone't

    I really didn’t know anything about Yetunde until I saw The Game’s video “Dreams” but when I heard it I had to do some research.I want to give all my love to the Williams/Price family and say I’m sorry for your loss cause I know how it feels to lose someone very dear to you.I have lost about 5 family members between January And July.So I want to thank The Game for that dedication, that was sweet of him and REST IN PEACE YETUNDE.Stay strong Isha,Lyndrea,Venus,Serena,Oracene,Richard and the whole family.You’ll see her again soon,I promise.PEACE

  20. Narissa

    Dear the price-william family,
    I also like Mone’t only just found out about Yetunde when I saw the Game’s video “Dreams”. I send all my love and prayers.

  21. Lisa

    To the Williams Family,
    I remember finding out about your loss and I am still so very sorry about it. I know it has been almost 2 years since this tragedy, but I am sure it still hurts like it was yesterday. You are in my thoughts and prayers always. May God continue to bless each and everyone of you!!
    With love and deepest sympathy,

  22. valerie

    Well i heard the news i was so shoked and thinkin how are the williams sisters are going to react about this news and if they will continue playin tennis im so sorry the williams family i know how it feels losing someone important i am deeply sorry.

  23. przemek [poland]

    I have heard of Her death from The Game’s song – The Dreams. Though I didn’t knew her I feel sorry for Her.
    With deepest sympathy,

  24. Anino

    To The Family,
    I am really sorry to hear this story,it’s really sad to hear a loving peaceful lady just goes out like that,and it makes you think why do good people die like that?I’d just like to point this out even if you hang with the Rev if you are meant to die out like that or if evil this are going to happen,they will happen. But God has been with the family all this years,he sure won’t leave them now and Kelly learn how to control your tongue cos it sounds to me you have a hard time controlling it. God Keep us all safe.
    Bless You Girls

  25. aznangel

    it’s over two years after the tragedy but i’d like to say that it’s hard to lose someone but don’t stay in sorrow because the sisters wants you to live with pide and joy. know that they had accomplish many things. i know that it’s not the best thing to say but i truely believe that the good die young.
    rest in peace

  26. Mykeya

    Tribute not to the williams sisters but to my cusin yetunde price and isha. I was staying with yetunde during the difficult times she had with her “boyfriend”. I didnt like the guy neither did any of her people, we all told her to stay away from him…..but you know how that goes. It was a very bad time because she helped me out alot…she helped me get my car and also was helping me get on my feet. Her mother “ursen” not even 2 days had passed when she boldy kicked me out. I had no were to go living on the streets, ah and thats suppose to be family. Tunde (is what we called her) was like the main lego holding both of our families together because for some reason we didnt get along.I told myself if somthing were to happen to her that that would be it for both of the famlies. I looked up to her and was following her footsteps. I got on her nerves and somtimes she got on mine….but she was family. What hurts the most is I had a close bond with Jiar,Justis,and J.J(her kids)! I did almost everything with them…..all those years of seeing them to not ever seeing them. The ohh so perfect williams sisters family have taken away from me. I dont hate anyone, I have learned in these 2yrs to just pray for wicked people and to always believe that god always has the last say. Its taken me this long to be able to talk about this matter with out crying. It still hurts but like the message kelly said was very true. It happend just like that she got involved with the wrong kind of guy…..dangg that guy wasnt at all kool….he was the most dirty ,crooked person that I knew he was so foul I could see this coming a mile away! So for all of you that would like to know more about this just hit me up….everything that I say is true and not a lie. The williams sister family isnt all that they seem……

  27. aneeqa

    I wish that gang violence stops immediatly because there just showing off to people by killing innocent yetunde price
    from aneeqa
    rip yetunde price!

  28. Babs Solomon

    To God be the glory, am not your family, but the African name (Nigeria) ‘YETUNDE’, was a great name. i share your lost of your family member, i pray that the lord in his mercy grant the dead internal peace, and protect the leaving.
    My god be with your family in this sad time, and bring back better time for the future.
    babs solomon uk

  29. Dupe Adegun

    It was with a very heavy heart and a deep sense of loss that I am writing to the family of Yetunde. I must say that as I Read all the tributes both the ones considered good and bad I tried so hard not to cry but, all of these were so strong and equally emotional for me. I did not know that the family were going through so much and yet, the fortitude demostrated by the family is being undermined by the press, this to me is bad. what does it matter whether Yetunde was their half-sister, is that what the sisters or the family should be hearing at the time of thier loss? Please, readers do not believe everything you read, as the so called “press” are out to destroy and not to build up a family. I am truly sorry that Yetunde’s name has been dragged in the mud by different people more so a family member. Families the way it’s meant to be in an ideal world sticks together in time of crisis and that is what the family should do and not tear each other apart irrespective of their differences. I do appreciate the fact that everybody is mourning and grieving, the different outburst of emotions from everybody, but lets encourage this wonderful girls and their family by praying for them and not writing worst things you can think of about their loved one Yetunde; more over their are children involved in this matter how would they feel reading terrible things about the one person who had worked all her life to keep them going. would they be happy or sad in years to come or would they come out as champs, that their mum had taught them to be. May God keep you and strenghen you, the family, friends and loved ones of Yetunde, I am sure if she looked back now she would wish that she had changed some things, she did not pray to die young and none one in his or her right mind would have set out to kill an innocent person.
    Finally let us rejoice and celebrate a life that was cut short and let peace reign in the family forget about your differences and start living again, God bless you all Amen.

  30. Sarezh Sorany

    Yetunde Price person that pushed the two atletic girls into this world and we will always remember her name and noone can fill the void that she has left in our hearts and her families heart, all we can say is that you and we will always love you Yetunde Price.

  31. tricia

    i was just looking through the williams sister’s pic and there was an image where the shoting took place am really sory about the loss of you sister an wish you have a greate season dis year.

  32. tricia

    i was just looking through the williams sister’s pic and there was an image where the shoting took place am really sory about the loss of you sister an wish you have a greate season dis year.

  33. Traci Michelle Swain

    to venus and serena williams and the rest of the williams and price family; i’m deeply sorry as to what happen to your sister,yetunde back in sept.03. i don’t know or even image,how i would continue to move on w/life,if that had of happen to me, especially w/ a sibling; even more worse, a parent, as well. i reminder, it was on a sunday, i happened to be off from work that day and sitting in front of the television,turning the channel; i happened to turned to the fox news cable channel and that when i saw and heard what had happened to miss price; i was in a state of shock and disbelief,as well as everyone else was. that’s an ordeal that no family or anyone for that matter should have to go through, in life. the williams and price family is a beautiful family and i feel very bad about what happen. as a matter of fact, a fews months earlier, in 2003; in the may 2003 issue of ebony magazine, there was a beautiful mother’s day picture inside of w/all 5 of the sisters and they mother miss oracene williams–that’s when ebony did a feature on venus and serena, as well as with the other sisters and their mother for that mother’s day. yetunde was on the left hand side–counter clockwise in the picture,w/ the rest of the family. that is a very beautiful picture for sistes to take,esp w/their mother, on mother’s day time; that’s a picture that anyone would cherish,w/a family. i saved that picture and issue of the ebony magazine–even to this day,i still have it laying on my counter in my computer room. any mother and daughter(s) will admire a mother’s day picture, such as that one; my own mother and myself like that and would get a picture, anytime, esp.for mother’s day,similar to that one taken of ourselves.
    but again my deepest condolesances, to the family.
    god bless you.
    from traci swain.

  34. Shonnette Edwards


  35. Sayo Oguntoye

    When I heard about the demise of the Williams’s half sister-yetunde,I was saddened in my heart more especially when Serena won the Australina Open 2007. I wept a bit when she made that emotional speech dedicating the trophy to her late sister. But I new she was the greatest and I new she was going to win and I am glad she did not let me down. Kudos to you Serena..Up Serena!!

  36. Awendy

    Love Keeps No Record Of Wrongs As Love Knows No Wrong…Love Will Find A Way! R.I.P Yetunde!!
    You are an inspiration and continue to give ‘life lessons’ even in your death!!!
    To the family: May the good Lord keep you all. I pray you all find solence in God’s grace and may you all continue to excel in all you do in honour of Yetunde…as marked by Serena’s dedication today-(Bravo Serena!)

  37. Bobby


  38. Just a Fan

    I just watched Venus and Serena play the Wimbelton, those sisters are awesome and shame on anyone who tried to drive a wedge between those family members, it does nt matter why this young lady was murdered, what matters most is that justice is served. Keep your heads up and keep winning, your sister would want that.
    Rest in Peace Yetunde Price.

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