A candlelight vigil was held Saturday night for Karlonzo Taylor, the teenager shot and killed in Hartford.
Family and friends of the 17-year-old joined with community group Mothers United Against Violence to call for an end to the cycle of violence in the Capitol City.
Inside the building’s entryway, mourner’s placed lit candles around pictures of Taylor, three floors beneath the landing, where the accused gunman opened fire.
Outside, Taylor’s mother, Marvella Williams, delivered a moving tribute to her son, with a photograph of him hanging around her neck. “The people that he was around looked up to him. They cherished him and he was the one that lit up the room,” Williams said.
Taylor may have been an unintended victim. He was shot alongside another teen while visiting the building with a larger group, according to police. Court documents show the alleged shooter told police he was targeting people who lived there.
Dotted amongst the crowd on Saturday were some of Taylor’s former teachers and administrators from Hartford’s Impact Academy and the CREC Academy of Aerospace & Engineering. Lori Sindland, who works in the library at the latter, led the group in several songs. “I think we always knew it, but in light of this tragedy, we’re hearing more and more stories of how he touched people’s hearts,” Sindland said.
Williams said a stop to senseless acts of violence is what her son would have wanted. “You have to change and you have to make his death be a lesson,” she said.