Forty-four-year-old Point Breeze woman Elaine Brooks had a pair of boxing gloves tattooed on her arm, according to neighbor Talib Salaam.
"She didn't take no mess," Salaam said this afternoon. "That's why they called her 'Knockout.'"
But Brooks' life was cut tragically short Friday night after her 21-year-old son found her lifeless body on the living room floor of the home they shared.
She had been stabbed multiple times. "I heard her name on the news and I thought, 'No, it couldn't be,'" Salaam said.
Brooks' time of death is not yet known – some neighbors reportedly heard loud music blasting from the home for several days before her son made the alleged discovery.
Footprints imprinted in dried blood Sunday afternoon were still stamped on the steps leading up to the two-story rowhouse on the 1900 block of Reed Street.
"One thing about her, she was a good person," Salaam said. "You don't meet too many people who just look out and don't ask for [anything]. You could call her and ask her anything. She will be missed."
He recalled how Brooks recently took him to a South Street sandwich shop and bought him a slice of vegetable pizza and a can of beer.
"That's the kind of person she was," he said. "This is so sad – I already miss her."
Salaam said he last saw Brooks on Thursday or Friday, possibly mere hours before her death.
"She was with me and her ex-boyfriend – his name is Black – at the Chinese store on the corner, buying us food," he said.
He said such random acts of kindness were second nature to Brooks – she was no longer romantically involved with Black, nor was he the father of her son.
"Her children's father was real protective," Salaam said ominously, declining to elaborate.
He said he didn't know the extent of that man's current involvement in Brooks' life or if their relationship had ever shown signs of violence.
Brooks' son was also somewhat of an enigma to neighbors – several residents of the block believed he worked as an amateur tattoo artist, but weren't sure – they said he mostly kept to himself.
"They were both pretty quiet," one woman said.
Brooks' son was taken in by police for questioning, but police on Sunday were unable to say if he'd yet been released and whether he is being treated as a suspect or a person of interest in the slaying.
"I just hope they find the person or persons who killed her," Salaam said. "She didn't deserve this."