Hours after her husband was slain while breaking up a street fight in north Minneapolis, Nicole Martin sat on her front stoop Tuesday afternoon, grieving.

“I want my husband to come home,” she moaned to herself. Dozens of friends and relatives sat on her front lawn on Irving Avenue North or stood nearby, still in shock that Steve Martin, 37, was dead.

Martin was alive when he arrived at North Memorial Medical Center on Monday night, said friend Kristin Dancho. Doctors were amazed, she said, because he had been shot in the neck and should have died instantly. Police officers called to the scene around 10:45 p.m. found him lying on the ground in the 3300 block of Penn Avenue N., a block dominated by an elementary school.

He had broken up a fight between young men when someone fired four shots, striking Martin, Dancho said.

“It shouldn’t have happened to Steve,” said his friend Jason Miles. “He was a good dude.”

Martin, who worked in construction, had nine children but no life insurance.

Tyrone Hutchins, Martin’s boss, said he was like a brother to him.

“Dedicated, a good father, a hard worker, funny. Nice to everybody,” Hutchins said. “He was always a person that would calm situations down. I can’t believe it.”

Miles said he grew up in north Minneapolis and is tired of the shootings.

“It’s just hitting too close to home and I’m sick of it,” he said. “I love the city, but I hate the city because of what it’s becoming. It’s like a cesspool of hate and disrespect and sadness.”

Nicole Martin, who had wandered away while her husband’s friends spoke about him, stood with friends in the street and cried.

The shooting remained under investigation Tuesday. Anyone with information about the case is urged to call police at 612-692-8477.