Crime Father of 5 Is Killed After Returning from Sister's Funeral as He Tried to Break up a Fight A cousin said Earl Simmons was a peaceful person who was good with children By Chris Harris Chris Harris Twitter Chris Harris has been a senior true crime reporter for PEOPLE since late 2015. An award-winning journalist who has worked for Rolling Stone and MTV News, Chris enjoys prog rock, cycling, Marvel movies, IPAs, and roller coasters. People Editorial Guidelines Published on March 29, 2021 10:52 AM Share Tweet Pin Email Earl Simmons. Photo: Facebook Hours after attending his sister's funeral last Friday, a 54-year-old father-of-five was killed on his birthday while trying to break up a fight in Columbus, Ohio, PEOPLE learns. Earl Simmons was fatally shot at around 8:24 p.m. that night. According to Columbus Police, officers responded to calls about a shooting in the city's Schenley Drive neighborhood, and found Simmons suffering from a gunshot wound. Simmons was rushed to the hospital in critical condition, and died at 8:53 p.m. Witnesses say that, moments before shots rang out, Simmons attempted to intervene in a physical fight. According to a statement from police, witnesses said "several weapons were fired" as Simmons tried to stop the fight. One of the bullets "struck Simmons, fatally wounding him," the statement explains. WSYX spoke to Simmons' cousin, Ted Crome, who said he was a peaceful man who was good with children. Want to keep up with the latest crime coverage? Sign up for PEOPLE's free True Crime newsletter for breaking crime news, ongoing trial coverage and details of intriguing unsolved cases. "One of the best people you want to meet," Crome said. "He'd give you the shirt off his back. He was that type of person. Just a fun-loving person." Crome said the killing has devastated Simmons' loved ones, who are hopeful an arrest is made soon. At this time, no one has been detained and charged in connection with Simmons' killing.