Family and friends of slain 20-year-old Kaylyn Pryor gathered Saturday morning to honor the memory of the promising young talent, whose life was taken just weeks after being crowned winner of a renowned modeling contest.
Funeral services for Pryor were held at New Covenant Missionary Baptist Church, with Rev. Johnny Henderson officiating.
Pryor was shot to death leaving her grandparents’ house on Monday, November 2, only blocks from where a 9-year-old boy was gunned down hours earlier.
She was standing outside with a 15-year-old boy from the neighborhood in the 7300 block of South May Street around 6:20 p.m. when a car pulled up and opened fire, according to police. She was killed when a bullet struck her in the right armpit. The teen with her was also shot but survived.
Police don’t believe Pryor was the intended target in the shooting, but it is likely the gunfire was in some way gang-related. It is still unclear if the teen she was standing with at the time of the shooting had ties to a gang.
Pryor’s father told NBC 5 his daughter was walking to the bus stop to travel back to their Evanston home when she was gunned down. He said he received the call while at the gym, and at the time was still in the dark about just how bad the news would be.
"I didn't know she had died. It really took me a while to get to the hospital," her father Alan Scott said. "I just hoped and prayed it wasn't so bad."
Her death comes just over a month after the suburban Chicago native was crowned winner of Mario Tricoci’s 2015 "Mario, Make Me a Model" competition, which ended with a Sept. 25 celebration and fashion show at the Redmoon Warehouse in Chicago, with more than 1,000 supporters and fans in attendance.
Following the win, Pryor signed with Factor Modeling Agency and was going to school at Robert Morris University’s Illinois campus with her sights set on becoming a paralegal.
In addition to modeling, Pryor enjoyed dancing, choreography, poetry and drawing.