BECKLEY, WV (WVNS) — It is a tragedy no mother wants to face, burying her son. On Saturday, May 15, 2021 members of the Beckley community headed to Heart of God Ministries to say their last goodbyes and to celebrate Dwayne Richardson Jr. Richardson was shot and killed on Sunday, May 2, 2021.

Pastor Damon Hamby pastored and baptized Richardson.

“We come to celebrate a life well lived, and honor the legacy of Dwayne Richardson Jr.,” Hamby said.

Richardson was 18 years old. He would have finished his junior year at Woodrow Wilson High School. He also was a part of the flying eagles basketball team and held a 4.06 GPA. His team attended to say their final goodbyes.

“So many people, not just in this state, but around this country. And through his travels with basketball and trips, so many people have been impacted in this season since he died two weeks ago. His family has been contacted by business owners, sports teams and there’s been a movement to launch t-shirts and masks, and hoodies honoring him as number 12,” Hamby continued.

Richardson left behind a huge legacy for the community of Beckley. Pastor Hamby said at the age of 12, Richardson decided he wanted to give his life to Christ through baptism. He said Richardson’s favorite bible verse was “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” Philippians 4:13.

Pastor Hamby and his family hopes his death brings awareness to the violence he endured.

“I personally attended too many funerals of young people died before their time and this family is poise to bring awareness and expose the evil and catastrophe of this fallout and they want as many people on board to do what we all can do what we can to protect our community,” Hamby stated.

Honoring Dwayne Richardson Jr. and seeing a Flying Eagle soar home.

Local businesses reached out to the Richardson family offering gifts. His mom decided to donate money towards the community center that will be built at the Mt. Vernon Church to help the youth stay out of trouble.