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'He was a joy,' Hundreds mourn death of 13-year-old Tyler Lawrence in Norwood

Hundreds mourn death of 13-year-old Tyler Lawrence in Norwood
Hundreds mourn death of 13-year-old Tyler Lawrence in Norwood 02:15

NORWOOD - Embracing one another in tears and broken hearts, hundreds gathered in Norwood to say goodbye and pay their respects to Tyler Lawrence. 

"Tyler was life," said Coakley Middle School Principal Margo Fraczek. 

The 13-year-old was gunned down in Mattapan last Sunday morning in broad daylight, while walking in his grandmother's neighborhood as he often did every weekend. His mother Remy was surrounded by an entire community that's completely devastated. 

"Tyler was special and exceptional," said family friend Dominga Martin.

Tyler was part of many community organizations. Toffer Winslow was Tyler's Big Brother. 

"He was a joy. He was a kid who had boundless energy," Winslow said. "I just don't understand how this happens. It's such an enormous loss of human potential. Tyler was going to be someone who was going to make a difference in this world. And the world has been robbed of that." 

Tyler Lawrence Norwood
Tyler Lawrence Remy Lawrence

The line for Tyler's celebration of life wrapped around the parking lot and down the street. Not surprising for a young man who had big dreams, including the NBA. He was also part of a program called No Books No Ball, an organization that stresses academics and basketball. 

"Every 13-year-old loves to live out their dream to play college and enter into the NBA," said Tony Richardson, founder of No Books No Ball. "It's just a travesty that his life was cut short and not being able to live out those dreams." 

Tyler was a 7th grader at the Coakley Middle School in Norwood. Classmates, teachers, and families were overcome with grief, knowing he will be greatly missed inside the classroom, down the hallways and in the locker room. 

"He was loved by so many people and he will be with us and with our school forever," Fraczek said. 

"What happened in our community is horrifying and tragic," said Martin. "This outpouring of love and support shows the impact of Tyler, and that the community is no longer going to stand for senseless murder." 

Police are still investigating the murder. So far, no arrest have been made. 

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