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Yaleah Hall

Age 17

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Sister, daughter, dancer, since day one

Leah” loved to dance, as her YouTube playlists and videos posted on social media show. And she loved her brothers and sisters

Her sister Minah looked up to her and their eldest sister, Tiyaniah: “(T)hey showed me things my mom couldn’t,” she said. “They been there since day one.”

On Nov. 19, 2018, Yaleah Hall, 17, was shot and killed alongside Tiyaniah Rakele Hopkins, 20, in a basement on Malcolm Street in southwest Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Police suspected a drug deal, but Captain John Ryan said that the sisters weren’t involved: “They were innocent bystanders of something that went very awry.”

By Samantha Woolley · Age 16
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Elisha Amon Cole

Age 17

Waldorf, Maryland

Dreaming big, working on his portfolio

At 17, he was living his best life. He enjoyed football, basketball, track and dirt biking. He excelled academically and had a loving family with eight siblings and his beloved dog, Bella.   

He was dreaming big, working on his senior portfolio and considering careers in cybersecurity or the military. He hoped to marry his high school sweetheart, Maddy.

At 8 p.m. on Oct. 3, 2018, Elisha Amon Cole was shot and killed in the crossfire between two gangs in Waldorf, Maryland. A fellow student called him “a good dude (in) the wrong place at the wrong time.”

By Zsofia Adamkovics-Larson · Age 17
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Lia Lin Collier

Age 15

Columbia, Tennessee

A light, “unrelenting joy” extinguished

She was an artist who loved to bake, craft, sew. A generous, selfless girl who cared for others and enjoyed giving gifts. She was one of four adopted children in the family and was homeschooled with three of her six siblings.

She “was unrelenting joy and exuberance,” reads an online testimonial by her family. “A loving and tender young woman who was always concerned about others’ well-being. A sweet hearted social butterfly who enjoyed good jokes and teasing.”

Lia Lin Collier, 15, and her three siblings were fatally shot by their mother in a murder-suicide on Oct. 15, 2018, at their home in Columbia, Tennessee.

By Suan Lee · Age 16
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Peyton Nicole Hurt

Age 15

Ledbetter, Kentucky

Still helping others, even in death

She spent her days painting watercolors. She would often sing – in the shower, in the car, for her family. She loved her siblings, her nephews, the people that surrounded her. She was always there for them:  She hugged when they cried, she talked when they couldn’t, she smiled when until they would laugh. She loved helping others.

Peyton Nicole Hurt, 15, was shot at a house party by her ex-boyfriend in Ledbetter, Kentucky on June 9, 2018. She was kept on life support long enough to donate her organs.

By Since Parkland Staff · Age
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Ryan Amadeo Dela Cruz

Age 17

Seattle, Washington

Gone, two weeks shy of graduation

He wanted to join the U.S. Armed Forces, so his father would rouse him every morning for school with their little inside joke: “Hey Marine, wake up!”

Friends described him as a dreamer — his family moved to America from the Philippines to give their children a better life. He dreamed of serving his country, succeeding in school and making his family proud. He excelled at math. In his downtime, he loved playing video games.

Ryan Amadeo Dela Cruz, 17, was a senior at Franklin High School in Seattle. He was fatally shot on June 2, 2018, two weeks shy of his high school graduation.

By Sarah Emily Baum · Age 18
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Rashaad Izil Wisher

Age 18

Wilmington, Delaware

One brother buried. Then another one.

He was known affectionately as “Pop-Pop.” He was respectful, obedient and kept to himself. But refusing to participate in gang activity could not protect him from the violence in his community.

Death was no stranger to him growing up: Three cousins were killed over things as simple as teasing over a bicycle. His beloved half-brother had died less than two months ago.

Rashaad Izil Wisher, 18, was shot the evening of July 8, 2018, in Wilmington, Delaware, a city that has had the highest rate of teen gun violence in the nation. Rashaad died from his wounds later that night at Christiana Hospital.

By Ethan Hale · Age 17
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Izabella Marie Helem

Age 4

Lebanon, Indiana

Brother shoots his sister by accident

Her mother had been a police officer who probably did not want the horrors of the job to follow her home. 

She and her brother could often be seen playing in the yard of their grandparents’ home. “Izzy was full of energy, you could not be in a bad mood around her,” her mother said.

Four-year-old Izabella Marie Helem was accidentally shot by her 3-year-old brother as he played with a gun in their grandparents’ home in Lebanon, Indiana, on Nov. 29, 2018. The child found the gun, which belonged to a family friend who staying at house, underneath the couch. Izabella died on Dec. 1, 2018.

By Scarlett Liriano Cepin · Age 19
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Raydale Hill

Age 17

Oakland, California

Can no longer create his music

Deep, steady beats pulse in the background as he enthusiastically raps and dances to his latest hit, “Heavy Night,” which has more than 21,000 views on YouTube.

His 4,235 followers on Instagram knew him as “Fat Daddy” and “Heavy Baby.” He spent a lot of time creating music videos with his friends. Outside the music realm, he was a brother and a father of three children.

Raydale Hill, 17, was shot outside a convenience store on West Grand Avenue in Oakland, California, on Sept. 13, 2018, at 12:17 a.m. He died at a hospital the same day.

By Zoe Hsu · Age 16
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Jaquincy Jawan Ross

Age 18

Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Wanted to buy her a scooter

After his stepfather died last year in their apartment complex’s parking lot, the young man was determined to protect his little brother and help his girlfriend raise her young daughter, even though he wasn’t the biological dad.

With the little girl about to turn 3, he spent a week looking for money to buy a scooter, her birthday wish, while struggling to find a job. He managed to raise the money for it. But he never got the chance to purchase it.

Jaquincy Jawan Ross, 18, was shot on September 23, 2018, in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, just yards away from where his stepfather was shot.

By Angele Yang · Age 16
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Lorenzo Moore-Vaughn

Age 17

Black Jack, Missouri

About to start his senior year

He was a basketball player about to start his senior year of high school. He had enrolled in summer school so he could graduate early.

He was thinking about his future, planning to pursue entrepreneurship or forensic science. He had strong family bonds; he was close to his cousin Alfonzo. His sister Jomila was planning on surprising him in December with a car as a graduation gift. On July 28, 2018, he was sitting in the front seat of a car while a friend in the backseat played with a gun.

It went off. Lorenzo Moore-Vaughn, 17, was fatally shot in Black Jack, Missouri.

By Rachel Perry · Age 17
Meet the Reporters

More than 300 siblings

Yaleah Hall

Sister, daughter, dancer, since day one

Elisha Amon Cole

Dreaming big, working on his portfolio

Lia Lin Collier

A light, “unrelenting joy” extinguished

Peyton Nicole Hurt

Still helping others, even in death

Ryan Amadeo Dela Cruz

Gone, two weeks shy of graduation

Rashaad Izil Wisher

One brother buried. Then another one.

Izabella Marie Helem

Brother shoots his sister by accident

Raydale Hill

Can no longer create his music

Jaquincy Jawan Ross

Wanted to buy her a scooter

Lorenzo Moore-Vaughn

About to start his senior year

Elijah Foster

Dope Boy Gang. One less member.

Kameron Johnson

He dreamed of college and cars

Jeremiah Ascencio

Last moments spent cradling his brother

Shondricka J'Nay Adams

Celebrating one night, gone the next

Ty'Dre Shyheim Hailey

She didn’t know it was real

Jayden Fondeur

His older brother found him first

Jontae Billups-Brooks

An athlete and a music lover

Rashiya Melton

Joins brother, leaves behind her twin

Caydence Nicole Painter

Reading, dancing, playing. Siblings shot together.

Jovontia Antonio Jones

A runner grieved by seven siblings