CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Langston Giles went out for a night of fun Thursday, but it almost cost him his life when a robber shot him near a popular uptown diner.

Now he s in a hospital bed at Carolina Medical Center trying to recover from a gunshot wound.

Our wife and I have raised four sons. This is our youngest, said James Giles, Langston s father, and an author of several self help books.

The family has known plenty of heartache. In 2008, their eldest son was shot and killed while visiting friends in Philadelphia.

I was really concerned about my wife because you just think about a mother who lost a child and in many ways she's never been the same, said Giles.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police arrested 30-year-old Bryan Stephen Thomas and charged him with attempted armed robbery and assault with a deadly weapon.

I don t understand what is going on in a person's mind for them to walk up to a complete stranger and try and rob them of what they worked to earn, said the author.

Giles says that gun violence in the African American Community has got to stop.

It occurred to me recently that my two youngest sons have buried more of their friends in their short life ties than I have in my entire life and that has been an incredibility sobering thought.

His son Langston is a student at Central Piedmont with an interest in design. His recovery promises to be long and difficult.

One of the reasons he has a chance is that two C.M.P.D. officers followed his blood trail and got him help.

(They) called the ambulance and got him to the trauma unit. We want to say thank you, thank you, from the bottom of our hearts, said Giles.

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