ORLANDO, Fla. – Victor “Gotti” Cherry told News 6 he used to mentor Antwan Roberts Jr. and his friends.
Investigators say the 15-year-old was shot on the sidewalk at the intersection of Columbia Street and Parramore Avenue in Orlando on Tuesday afternoon.
Cherry said when he heard what happened he immediately reached out to Roberts’ friends.
He told News 6 that kids their age should be filling out college applications and looking forward to their Sweet 16 birthday.
“They shouldn’t be thinking about, I have to get a suit and tie to go to my friends viewing and funeral,” Cherry said.
He said in the interactions he had with Roberts, he could tell Roberts loved his friends. He said they were always laughing and joking.
“It shows that he had a good heart, and he had compassion, I never knew him to do anything bad or wrong,” Cherry said.
On Wednesday, balloons, stuffed animals, and candles line the sidewalk at the intersection where family and friends said Roberts was shot.
Loved ones and friends were emotional as they paid visits to the site.
Orange County Public Schools said Roberts was a 9th grader at Wekiva High School and was enrolled as a face-to-face student in September.
Cherry said Roberts’ friends tell him they are hurting with the loss of their friend.
“I feel that we as a community, we let these children down, we let them down, so I’m hurting,” Cherry said.