CHICAGO (CBS) — Friends of Rylan Wilder are holding a benefit concert on Saturday to help his family pay his medical bills, after the 15-year-old musician was shot in the Old Irving Park neighborhood, by police officers chasing a bank robbery suspect.
The youngest frontman to ever play Riot Fest was supposed to headline a show Saturday in North Center. But with his band, Monarchy Over Monday, unable to play while he recovers, three other bands were holding a benefit concert for Rylan.
The first to take the stage was Neptune’s Core, an indie teen girl band whose members grew up with Rylan.
When they heard he had been shot by a Des Plaines police officer aiming for a bank robber, they could hardly believe it.
Rylan’s left hand and arm were badly injured in the shooting, and some have wondered whether the Lane Tech student will be able to play again. Neptune’s Core visited him at the hospital after he was hot, and they said he’s bound and determined to get back on stage.
“He’s really, really strong, and he’s super determined to recover,” Neptune’s Core drummer Kaitlin Cywinski said. “We saw him recently, and he’s just been talking about how he just wants to get better as fast as possible.”
Des Planes police accidentally shot Rylan on Nov. 19, while chasing a bank robbery suspect who had stolen a car and driven several miles into the city of Chicago.
Christopher Terrell Willis had robbed a Bank of America Branch in Des Plaines at gunpoint on Nov. 19, and made off with more than $15,000, police said.
FBI agents, and Chicago, Des Plaines and Illinois State Police officers were able to track the suspect’s movements after the quick-thinking teller slipped in a GPS tracking device with the money. Chicago Police were waiting when Willis got off the Kennedy Expressway at Irving Park Road.
Upon seeing Chicago Police at Irving Park Road near Kildare Avenue, Willis fired at the vehicles — striking a Chicago Police officer in the head, police said. That officer was seriously wounded, but has since been released from the hospital.
Meantime, Willis stormed into the UpBeat Music & Arts school at 4318 W. Irving Park Rd. Des Plaines police officers followed him inside, and shot and killed him, but also accidentally shot Rylan in the arm and stomach.
Rylan and the other kids inside the music school ran out through an alley. The rest of the music students made it into the nearby Berman Subaru dealership, but witnesses said Rylan didn’t get that far.
He was taken to Lurie Children’s Hospital in critical condition, but he has since been stabilized and is out of critical condition.
Willis’ accomplice, 32-year-old Maurice Murphy, is facing a federal bank robbery charge.