A 14-year-old Philadelphia boy was shot and killed following a high school football scrimmage, and his mother has described the terrifying moment she heard gunshots and hugged her son close as he lay dying.
On Tuesday, Nicolas Elizalde was killed when a group of five attackers stormed the Roxborough High School field after a scrimmage had concluded. The gunfire also injured four other young men.
Nicolas Elizalde, according to his mom Meredith, is a proud Chicano and Muslim-American who will soon be turning 15 years old.
Elizalde told how she had been waiting in the car to pick up her son after the scrimmage when she heard gunfire ring out and rushed to the site, where she discovered Nicolas bleeding from a wound to the chest.
I heard the gunfire and couldn’t see him, but as a mother, I knew. Quickly, I made my way to the firing range. I sprinted to the gunfire but was unable to capture him; nonetheless, while holding him, I saw his spirit leaving. Yes, but I had him in my arms. “He wasn’t on his own,” Elizalde told NBC Philadelphia on Thursday.
Putting her hand on his face, she reportedly told him, “I love you, I’m here,” before reciting a Muslim prayer for him.
Nicolas was the “greatest son that anyone could ask for,” his mother said, because he cared deeply about animals and the environment and had participated in protests for causes such as animal rights, abortion rights, and gun control.
According to his mother, Nicolas was horrified by the May massacre at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, where 19 students and two teachers were killed.
“He had the kindest heart of anyone I’ve ever met. It was like bringing up Gandhi, she added.
After the scrimmage between three schools had concluded at around 4:30 p.m., the shooting occurred.
It was reported by Philadelphia police that four of the five minors shot were 14–17-year-old members of the Roxborough High School football team.
On Wednesday, police announced in a press conference that the shooting was caught “in its entirety” on security video.
A volley of gunshots can be seen being fired from an SUV after five people had been seen to exit the vehicle on camera.
When one of the victims was hit and collapsed on the sidewalk, four of the five shooters returned to the SUV, but the fifth proceeded to pursue him. According to the authorities, the gunman then ran up to the victim, stood over him, and continued firing.
A lack of ammunition and a stuck slide were presumably the only things that prevented this person from opening fire “Philadelphia Police Homicide Captain Jason Smith stated.
There were over sixty-four cartridge cases discovered, according to the authorities.
It appears that “most, if not all,” of the perpetrators are also minors, as stated by the police.
The police say the suspects waited for the game to end and then attacked a group of kids as they were leaving.
Authorities have released security footage showing a group of masked, armed men and are offering a $40,000 prize for information leading to an arrest.
Smith said, “we do suspect that one or two of the individuals inside that group were intentionally targeted,” implying that the reason is unclear. We have no reason to suspect that they were singled out because they were football players.”
Smith stated his belief that Nicolas was not the intended victim.
Nicholas was a student at Walter B. Saul High School in Delaware County, although he played football for Philadelphia’s Roxborough High School. Elizalde claimed that in order for his son to be more conveniently located for his sports activities, his family was planning a move to the Roxborough area.
To end gun violence in the city, Elizalde is now urging lawmakers to take action.
I really want to tell them to quit trying to silence the public by standing on a podium and reciting platitudes like “here are some thoughts and prayers and some meaningless legislation.” When Elizalde declared, “I want the Pennsylvania Legislature to do something,” he meant the inactive minority.
A candlelight memorial was conducted on Thursday in Nicolas’s honor at Roxborough, where the community is now in mourning.
“There just isn’t a better, more pure human being on Earth, and that’s why God took him,” Elizalde said of her son.