Delmonte Johnson, 19, spent much of his young life speaking out against gun violence in his community. Wednesday night he laid in his brother’s arms as he bled out in the street of Chicago’s south side. The very thing that he was working to end, took his life. He was shot repeatedly about 7:30 p.m. and he died of a chest wound less than an hour later at the University of Chicago Medical Center, authorities said.
Johnson was a member of the anti-violence organization Good Kids Mad City.
Good Kids Mad City co-founder Carlil Pittman told Chicago Sun Times that he had known Johnson since childhood through their involvement with Evening Star Missionary Baptist Church in Englewood, where Johnson was active on the church’s dance team and choirs.
Johnson then joined him at Good Kids Mad City, which formed earlier this year after the Stoneman Douglas High School shooting in Parkland, Florida. The group aims to reduce Chicago gun violence through youth employment and improved mental health services and group activities.
At the vigil, Johnson’s brother Devirgo Johnson said the 19-year-old had taken one of their siblings to basketball practice and was playing ball himself when the drive-by shooting happened, reports the Times.
“I laid next to my brother when he was dying in my hands,” Devirgo said as he cried. “I knew he was leaving me. But he’s still with me.”
Johnson’s slaying prompted a tweet from anti-violence activist and Parkland shooting survivor David Hogg.
“My heart goes out to Delmonte and his family. together we will end this,” Hogg wrote.
Chicago police haven’t released further details on the attack, but said Thursday evening that two people of interest were in custody.
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