Zaevion William Dobson, a 15 year old Tennessee high school football player became a hero on Friday after he was shot and killed as he shielded three girls from gunfire when several men embarked on a shooting spree.
The shootings began on Thursday night says Knoxville Police Chief David Rausch. The first person shot was Lisa Perry, was shot inside her apartment but is expected to survive. The shooter was Perry’s son and Rausch said that the 23-year-old Brandon Perry, and several men drove another neighborhood where Dobson lived and “randomly fired multiple times.”
Reports say the girls shielded by Dobson were not injured.
Brandon Perry was later found shot after he crashed his car into apartment and died from his injuries on Friday morning. Two other men, who were involved fled from the crash scene but were caught and arrested. Though one was released after being questioned by authorities.
It’s a day of grieving for the Tennessee community as Rausch said:
“These cowardly and senseless acts of violence must stop. We should be preparing to celebrate the Christmas holiday, but now we have two men who are dead.”
Rausch thinks the shootings are gang related, but there doesn’t appear to be a motive to target Dobson. Rausch also said:
“Unfortunately, they picked a random group of young men and women who were just hanging out and trying to prepare to celebrate the holiday,”
Dobson was a sophomore at Fulton High School in northern Knoxville. Knoxville mayor Madeline Rogero said:
“He was really one of our success stories. Involved in sports, a mentee of one of our organizations in town. But still he falls victim to this.”
Rob Black, the head coach of the Fulton football team said Dobson was:
“[a]fine, fine young man. [He] [was] only a sophomore, but a very contagious young man who was very liked by his peers and his teachers [and [is] going to be a tough time as we leave from here and go meet with our football players.”
It truly is a tragedy that such a young fell victim to gun violence but he is a hero for his acts. We all should look inward and send our hopes out to the community.