Visually challenged Jervon Morris shot to death while playing basketball in the park he loved in Longwood Manor

Jervon Morris | Facebook

Jervon Morris | Facebook

Life was never easy for Jervon Morris. The special needs student had lost most of his eyesight by age 2, and had other physical and mental impairments.

His death was not easy either. On Memorial Day, the 20-year-old lost his life to gun violence just a block from his Longwood Manor neighborhood home on the South Side.

Morris, born with born with cataracts, lost the sight in one eye at age 1, and had lost most of the sight in the other by age 2.

But he overcame that handicap in a big way, and loved to draw, play basketball and volunteer for park programs, friends and family wrote on Facebook.

He hated when people called him blind. He could see, not as great as everyone else, but some of his shots still went in,” a relative wrote.

He learned to play ball at his alma mater, Curie Metropolitan High School, using his keen hearing instead of sight. But his passion was volunteering with younger kids in Chicago Park District programs at Euclid Park, where he could be found almost every day, friends wrote on Facebook.

And he was playing ball at the park in the 9800 block of South Wallace, about a block from his home, when he was shot in the head about 5:40 p.m. Monday, according to Chicago Police and the Cook County medical examiner’s office.

He was pronounced dead the 5:58 p.m., the medical examiner’s office said. An autopsy Tuesday ruled his death a homicide.

… whenever he was around he kept me laughing he was so innocent and I just can’t understand why would someone take his life …” a friend wrote.

Police believe Morris may have been caught in the crossfire of at least two gunmen. He was not believed to have been the intended target.

A GoFundMe page has been set up to help the family with funeral expenses.

Although he lived day to day with these setbacks, it never stopped his true love for being a wonderful human being,” the page author wrote of Morris. “Jervon Morris spent countless hours volunteering his time to the children and teenagers at Euclid Park. He was well respected and loved to bring joy to those in time of pain and need. Jervon Morris was and is an outstanding person…”

A YouCaring page has been created to help the family with funeral expenses.

There are no words to describe how heartbroken we are over the senseless death of Jervon Morris on Memorial Day,” the page author wrote. “Although we know that GOD has a reason for everything, it never feels okay to bury someone so kind and young when you know they have not yet had an opportunity to accomplish their dreams.”

A post on the Curie High School website said simply: “Jervon (class of 2014) brought a gentle light to Curie that will continue to shine.”

—Homicide Watch Chicago

blog comments powered by Disqus