MIAMI-DADE (CBSMiami) – The family of a 16-year-old Miami boy who died after he was shot over the weekend will get help from Miami-Dade Schools to bury their son.
“I’ve attended funerals, viewings or burials for over 40 children,” Miami-Dade Schools Superintendent Alberto Carvalho said Tuesday.
Now, Carvalho will have to attend another funeral to honor a life taken too soon. Bryan Herrera, a 16-year-old student from Miami-Jackson Senior High School, was killed Saturday.
“As a father, as a teacher, as a superintendent, that’s unacceptable,” Carvalho said from the Herrera family home.
Herrera was riding his bike near N.W. 11th Avenue and 39th Street in Allapattah just after 11 a.m. on Saturday when he was shot in the head. He was rushed to the Ryder Trauma Center where he died.
“My mind, my body, my family, we are all numb just thinking about what could have been in his mind in those last minutes,” Bryan’s father William Herrera said.
His family said he was heading to a friend’s home and planning to work on a school project.
On Monday, the family issued a heartfelt plea for clues at the Miami Police Department.
“We are just looking for some answers on our son this Christmas,” said William Herrera of his son Bryan. “We came out here for the community’s help. We are trying to pick up the pieces. Our hearts are broken, our lives.”
Police say they have very little information on the gunman.
Herrera’s family said they want Bryan’s killer brought to justice.
“No idea what was in his life that was so bad that he could have died for it,” William Herrera said.
Miami Police said they have no description of the shooter, don’t know why Bryan was shot and described the victim as a good kid who loved computer games and who was a straight-A student with no criminal history.
Police searched Bryan’s belongings to fins some clues as to why someone might want to hurt him, but all they found were game cards and sketches of comic book figures.
“He was a young kid full of life. He loved the family and now he’s gone,” Bryan’s brother said. “I just don’t want this to happen to anyone else. This was a bad dream.”
“I am here with Bryan’s father to comfort him, to pray with him. To assure him that losing his son is painful enough,” Carvalho said.
The two men, both fathers, shared a warm embrace, as Carvalho promised to cover the remaining expenses for Bryan’s funeral.
“This is a loss of life that is unacceptable. The future, the promise that was stolen from this family, from America, is being stolen one child at a time,” Carvalho said. “This is one more wake up call that we should not accept.”
Carvalho said he’s called on Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez to bring police chiefs from all over the county together to develop solutions to keep kids safe both at school, and on the streets, especially in the wake of the tragedy in Newtown, Conn.
A police detective told CBS4′s Peter D’Oench, “This is innocence in the truest sense of the word. Unfortunately for the family, Christmas may never be the same again.”
“Please, if you know anything, someone must know something, please call. Please help,” Bryan’s sister pleaded.
They urge anyone who knows something about the shooting to call Crime Stoppers at (305) 471-TIPS (8477).