(STMW) — A teenage boy was shot and critically wounded Friday evening near Rainbow PUSH headquarters in the Kenwood neighborhood on the South Side, officials said.

The 17-year-old was walking about 7:35 p.m. in the 4900 block of South Drexel Boulevard when a minivan drove up and someone inside fired shots, striking the teen in the back, police News Affairs Officer Thomas Sweeney said.

The Rev. Jackson said he was conducting a town hall meeting on education when he was told of the shooting outside.

“I rushed out, the police had come, they had put him on a stretcher,” Jackson told the Chicago Sun-Times.

Jackson tried to comfort teens who were emotionally distressed.

“It hurts to see so many young children traumatized and scared and crying and holding onto me,” Jackson told the Sun-Times.

Jackson said paramedics worked on the wounded teen for about 20 minutes and they then took him to Stroger Hospital. Jackson also went to the hospital.

“The tragedy is, they could’ve used the University of Chicago hospital just around the corner,” Jackson said. “But it’s not a trauma level hospital.”

Jackson said he has been protesting the lack of a trauma center hospital in the area for some time.

Jackson said he saw no significance in the shooting occurring outside PUSH’s headquarters during its kick-off event for its annual convention.

“It’s also [blocks] from the president’s house, you can’t read anything into that.”

The teen was taken to the hospital in “stable” condition, Sweeney said.

A police source said the boy is a documented gang member.

(Source: Sun-Times Media Wire © Chicago Sun-Times 2014. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

Watch & Listen LIVE