Grief counselors were on hand Monday at Evanston Township High School to help students cope with the loss of a 14-year-old student shot Saturday on his way home from a party.
Dajae Coleman, a freshman at Evanston Township, was shot to death around 10:30 p.m. in the 1500 block of Church Street, police said.
Friends said Coleman was at a party that had been broken up because gang tensions were running high. As Coleman walked out with a couple of friends, someone pulled up and opened fire on the teens.
Coleman was shot in the chest and later pronounced dead at a nearby hospital.
“He ain’t never in no trouble, always just playing basketball,” said his 13-year-old friend Montay Williams. “They were shooting at someone else, but they got him,” he said.
Coleman's friends and family said he was a gifted athlete and an honors student in middle school.
“He was a marvelous kid, excellent kid, would have been an excellent football player … whatever he set his mind to,” said James Cox, Coleman’s grandfather.
Police are still looking for the shooter as friends are remembering Dajae.
One of his teachers wrote online that Coleman was a hard worker. “This should never happen to such a promising young man who would have been a positive addition to our community, our future.”
A fundraiser in Coleman's memory has been scheduled for 9 p.m. Thursday at Cafe Sunset, 5726 N. Western Ave., in Chicago. All proceeds from the event will go to his mother to help pay for expenses.