Monday, March 28, 2016
AUGUSTA, Ga (WRDW) --
"We have to tell them that this violence must stop," said Mario Outland, Demajhay Bell's basketball coach.
That was the theme at Beulah Grove Baptist Church today as friends and family said goodbye to Demajhay Bell.
The 18 year old died last week, after he was stabbed during a large street brawl in Hephzibah.
The Richmond County Sheriff calling it a senseless murder.
"His passing, I hope it teaches all these youth out there," Outland said. "We gotta come together and put this to an end."
So far, nine people have been arrested in connection with his death and all are charged with murder.
Six of those arrested are students at Glenn Hills High School.
And, with a packed house at Demajhay's funeral, and half of them are teens.. community leaders took advantage of the chance to send a message, to keep any more from having to learn a tough lesson, or worse, lose their lives.
"We have to open up our youth's eyes," Outland said.
"It would bring so much joy to them in the midst of heartache and in the midst of pain to know that somebody made up their minds to change their lives through this death of Demajhay," said Minister Cashendra Jackson
"How do we end up here, so this stuff doesn't happen again?" said Rev. Moses D. Anderson.
With many wearing shirts that read 'Long Live Majhay' the community is now hoping the message in his death will live on even after the t-shirts have faded.
"You really want to say long live Demajhay, then make a decision today to put aside all bitter, and anger," said Minister Jackson.
Demajhay was on a traveling basketball team.
This weekend his teammates held a car wash to raise money for the funeral.
A lot of those teammates also serving as pallbearers today.