Deerfield Beach, FL—A high school football player chose to bypass a team trip to visit colleges so that he could attend his grandfather’s funeral in Riviera Beach on Saturday. Tragically, he was shot and killed after the service.
His coach, Jevon Glenn told the Sun Sentinel that Terrance Jackson, 15, “was killed at his grandfather’s funeral today. We’re on college tours. I’m in Auburn with 20 kids. He stayed to go to the funeral.”
The shooting happened on the street shortly after the funeral had taken place around 2:30 pm. Police said that 47-year-old Royce Freeman died at the scene along with 15-year-old Jackson. The shooter also hit a woman who is being treated for injuries.
In a statement, the Riviera Beach Police say that the shooting wasn’t a random act of violence. “While the motive for the shooting is still being investigated, it is believed it was a result of a dispute between relatives of the deceased whose funeral had been held.”
In a video statement posted on Facebook, Pastor Tywuante D. Lupoe said that the church was “very aware” that the violence stemmed from a dispute within the family. He also said that armed security was present at the service. A police officer was also present.
Listening devices in the area caught the sound of 13 rounds of gunshots being fired.
Coach Glenn said the other members of the football team “didn’t take it well.” He said they are heartbroken.
The team was already grieving the loss of another teammate who died on December 30 after being hit by a train in Broward County. That death was ruled a suicide by authorities.
Glenn said that the students have decided to return home, cutting their trip short. “We’re playing it by ear,” he said.
The team had so far visited the University of Florida, Auburn and Valdosta State in Georgia, and were scheduled to visit Florida State University in Tallahassee.
Glenn went on to speak of Jackson, saying that he’d worked hard to “perfect his craft” as a football player and that he was “waiting in the wings. This year was going to be his year.”