Two teenage boys were found shot to death Friday night inside a parked car in Gary, Ind.
Gary Police say an officer saw a car parked in the 800 block of Burr Street with the driver side door open at around 8:30 p.m. Friday night. Upon further investigating, the officer discovered two teenage boys inside the car.
17-year-old Kasreeyal Hester and 15-year-old Mark Skipper were both pronounced dead at the scene, according to police and the Lake County Coroner’s office. Both deaths were ruled homicides.
“I heard like a thump thump sound, sounded like 8 bumps, 8 shots or whatever, I didn’t know,” said neighbor Jim Harris. “I looked out the window and I see some charger tail lights going that way but I didn’t see anything else.”
“It’s kind of senseless you know? This kind of stuff going on,” he added, telling NBC 5 that the neighborhood is usually quiet. “I’ve lived in this city for every bit of 45 years and you don’t see stuff like this every day”
The victims were students at Morton High School in Hammond, Ind., where they played football together– Skipper at quarterback and Hester, a runningback.
The Morton football family mourns the loss of our football players today. Mark Skipper, #16 and Kasreeyal Hester passed away last night. They was taken away from us too soon. Rest in peace our friends.
“He always made people laugh and if we were having a bad day, he would make the class laugh and stuff like that,” the victims’ friend Briona Jones said of Skipper. “He was a great person. He always kept a smile on his face, making people laugh. Mark never did nothing bad.”
A GoFundMe page set up for Skipper’s burial costs had raised over $800 by Saturday afternoon.
Hester lived next door to where the bodies were found, and Skipper lived on the 6600 block of Kentucky Ave. in Hammond.
“He was a boy trying to find his path, trying to finish school. That’s what he wanted to do,” said Hester’s uncle Tim Keith. “He just wanted to live life. He’s young, that’s all it is. He’s young trying to find his way in life.”
“He was with his best friend and both of them lost their lives for nothing,” added Shante Keith, Hester’s aunt. “They were football players together, they went to school together. They just were like peas in a pod. You seen him, you seen both of them.”
Friday was Hester’s 17th birthday. His family had planned to celebrate the occasion this weekend, but now, they’ve planned a candlelight vigil at their home Saturday evening at 8 p.m.
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