A Chicago teenager who was an anti-violence activist has become the latest victim of his city’s rising bloodshed.
Delmonte Johnson, 19, who became active in a student-led anti-violence group in the city called GoodKids MadCity, was gunned down Wednesday in Chicago’s South Side.
“He died as a servant,” Johnson’s mother, Onique Walker, said Thursday night, according to the Chicago Sun-Times. “Anything you asked Delmonte to do, he was there... He died on the streets of Chicago that he was trying to help.”
According to his mother, Johnson was on the softball team at his school and played basketball in a summer league. He was also involved in his church.
He was also involved in a student-led anti-violence movement in Chicago, which has been rocked by a soaring crime rate, particularly among its youth. He became involved after he lost a friend to gun violence, according to the Chicago Tribune.
Data compiled by Tribune shows that since September 2011 at least 174 people under the age of 17 have been killed while 1,665 kids have been shot.
“Delmonte Johnson died this week in the same way so many die in Chicago every day – a victim of the same gun violence that has plagued our city for generations,” mayoral candidate Amara Enyia said in a press release, “because we lack the will to address the root causes of this complex crisis.”
Johnson’s brother, Devirgo, told the Sun-Times his brother had taken their siblings to basketball practice and he started playing himself when he was randomly shot in the chest and stomach at about 7:30 p.m. He was pronounced dead at a nearby hospital at 8:16 p.m.
At least one person was in custody, according to WGN9.
“He was always the person to look out for a friend,” Kofi Ademola, an adult mentor for GoodKids MadCity, told the Tribune. “That’s the attitude they take trying to heal other young people and heal the day-to-day trauma.”