Vigils planned for young man, killed while playing basketball in a park

Instead of celebrating a man’s 19th birthday, a local family is planning vigils in the wake of his death.

Dallas Police say 18-year-old Patrick Powell was shot in a drive-by Wednesday night at Miller Family Park on Persimmon Road, while playing basketball with his cousin.

A 13 and a 14-year-old are in custody, and police say Powell was not their intended target.

His grandmother, Alene Powell raised him since birth, “Patrick was a good child, he had his moments, but he was a good child,” she said, “I had him ever since he's been in the world. I brought him home from the hospital.”

She says her grandson loved going to school, church and playing basketball.

“Yes, I'm still proud of him, he's gone but I'm still proud of him.”

With his life and dreams cut short, Powell is left with only questions.

“I want to know how a 13-year old , 14-year old get a car? How'd they get a gun? Who's gun was it? Who's car was it?” she said, “I want to know how their parents feel. I bet they don't feel like I feel. Because their children did this to my child.

Powell was a junior deacon in the youth ministry at his Greater Community First Baptist Church, where he went every week with his grandmother. Reverend Lacedric Williams recalls a time when they were having trouble getting junior deacons to participate and he turned to Patrick for help.

“And that Sunday morning, he had a group of young men standing up there, and they opened up the service,” said Rev. Williams

Rev. Williams says Powell was awarded one of four church scholarships for having a 3.0 GPA or higher.

“I just know he had so many goals. And I know everything he achieved, it didn't come easy. He had to fight, claw and struggle. But he got there, just to see it all taken away, just by playing basketball.”

Powell passed away at Baylor Hospital on Thursday, surrounded by family and friends, but even in death he’s making his grandmother proud.

“He stayed in there so long because he was an organ donor. He donated his kidneys and liver to somebody else,” she said.

Powell’s family and friends will hold a candlelight vigil at the park where he was killed, Tuesday night at 8pm, marking his 19th birthday. They’re also having a prayer vigil and balloon release at his church at 7pm on Wednesday.