Urban Prep Student Killed In Far South Side Shooting

Updated 03/04/15 – 11:11 a.m.

CHICAGO (CBS) –A South Side charter school is mourning the murder of one of its students.

Urban Prep Academy student Deonte Hoard, 17, was killed while walking home in the 10500 block of South Yates Avenue Monday night, according to the school. Hoard was hit in the chest and died at the scene.

Hoard was a member of the basketball and track teams at the Urban Prep Englewood Campus and had already been accepted to several colleges.

According to a statement by Urban Prep founder and CEO Tim King, Hoard is the first student to be killed while enrolled in an Urban Prep school.

“His life was cut short by a senseless act of violence. However, this is not the reason we will remember him,” King said in a statement. “Instead, we will remember a young man, full of promise and potential, well-liked by teachers and friends, and loved by his family.”

King said they will honor him in the coming weeks and that grief counselors are available for students and staff.

CBS 2 Mike Parker reports his family and friends gathered Tuesday night to remember him.

“This is just a senseless killing,” said Ebonie Martin, Hoard’s mother. “If you tell me my son was a gangbanger or a thug, then I am going to say okay, but he wasn’t. He was a ball player. A ball player who only wanted to play ball.”

Classmates arriving at school Wednesday morning said his passion was basketball and track.

“None of this is making sense. That was one of my brothers. I shook hands with him right before I left school, and to hear that this happened, it’s devastating,” fellow senior Isaiah Butt said. “He was very uplifting. You would never really see him down, and if he was down, then he would always still try and make people happy. Everybody knows that he lived his life for playing ball.”

Ruby Sutherlin, an Urban Prep grandmother, said it’s hard to tell children when something like this happens.

“It’s very tragic,” she said.

No one has been charged in Hoard’s murder. A 23-year-old man was also wounded in the shooting.

The school is accepting donations for the family at www.urbanprep.org/donate.

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