BATON ROUGE - Hundreds filled church pews at a service held for Bryant Lee, a McKinley High School student who was shot and killed earlier this month.
Those in attendance Saturday said they don't believe Lee's death will be in vain.
"There are pivotal moments in the life of a community... Moments that demand our attention and our action," Mayor Sharon Weston Broome said.
Some of Lee's teammates from the McKinley High football team spoke of his humor and character, garnering laughs and tears from the crowd. Lee's colleagues ended by presenting his number 5 jersey to his parents.
For the rest of Lee's peers in attendance, there was a call to end the violence.
"I believe the violence has gotten to an epidemic stage in our community, and as leaders we have to focus on this issue and say enough is enough," said Johnny Anderson, a member of governor's executive staff.
Amid the tragedy of Lee's death, the plea did not fall on deaf ears.
"He shouldnt be gone. He chould be right here, standing next to me," said Joshua Davis, one of Bryant's best friends.
Lee's friend of 15 years says he always had a knack for teaching lessons, and he hopes Lee's death is no exception to that.
"He was always a leader, I was the oldest he was the most wise and bravest," Davis said.
As those who loved Lee carried his casket, it reminds to keep his memory alive with a renewed purpose.
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