A vigil was held for 17-year-old Allayzia Jackson at Tuppee Tong Thai restaurant Saturday. Jackson was the victim in a shooting Thursday afternoon. Andrew Smith, DN
Shooting victim remembered at vigil in downtown Muncie
It was a different scene at the Tuppee Tong Thai restaurant Saturday night than the scene Thursday afternoon when a Muncie teen was shot and killed.
Friends, family and Muncie community members gathered outside of the downtown restaurant to remember Allayzia Jackson, the 17-year-old victim in Thursday's shooting.
"This is our way of saying goodbye to her, and let her know we love her, and try to make everyone stick together in life because life is too short," said Michael Johnson, Jackson's uncle.
Family and friends of Jackson spoke at the event, sharing not only memories, but a message to the Muncie community.
"What is going on?" Jackson's father asked. "Muncie, Indiana, is going to have to answer."
Johnson said he was surprised at how many friends, family and community members came to the vigil.
"She touched a lot of people's lives," Johnson said. "She was too young to leave this earth right now."
Police have not pressed any charges against the suspect and several people who gathered said they will fight for justice.
"I just think we all need to come together, because we all got to play a part in this," Johnson said. "We got to get the violence in this town to stop. This town is too small for all this violence."
After those gathered took a moment of silence to remember Jackson and say a prayer, balloons were passed out to be released.
"That's a sky of hope," one community member said as the balloons were released.
Marwin Strong, founder of Enough is Enough, an organization that aims to bring crime rates down in Muncie, spoke at the event and stressed a sense of community.
"A lot of people are family and a lot of people don't understand Muncie is so small, a big tight knit family, everybody knows everybody," said Strong. "It takes a village to raise a child, so when something happens, everybody knows everybody, so it affects everybody."