Jordan Davis' parents, city join to celebrate teen victim's life
17-year-old killed in dispute over loud music at gas station
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The parents of Jordan Davis want the community to remember their son and celebrate his life.
That's why they asked the city to dedicate one day to him and come together at the Jacksonville Landing.
The 17-year-old was killed on Black Friday when detectives said Michael Dunn (pictured, below) opened fire into a SUV full of teenagers at a Gate gas station off Southside Boulevard and Baymeadows Road in a dispute over loud music. Davis was struck by the gunfire and killed. Dunn is charged with murder, but claims he acted in self-defense.
On Feb. 16, Davis would have turned 18. So his family and friends are going to have a big celebration to honor him and all other victims of violence at the Landing.
His dad, Ron Davis, says he wants people to wake up that day and just be happy to be alive, extend their hand to the first stranger they see or even give that stranger a hug. He said that's what his son would have wanted.
"I know I go out and I cry at the cemetery all the time, I cry and talk to him all the time, but the thing is I'm assured and I know that he's with us every step of the way," said Lucy McBath, Jordan's mother. "And I feel his presence, we both do, and that's makes us understand and lets us know that we're doing the right thing."
Jordan's parents recently got back from Capitol Hill. There they talked to members of Congress about stricter gun laws and say they were very well-received.
They've also completed another mission -- creating a day in the River City dedicated to their son and other victims of gun violence.
"You raise a child and you don't know what he's going to do in life, and for him to be so huge for the community, even after death, it's just very tremendous for us, and we just thank the city of Jacksonville for that," Ron Davis said.
"It's more of a celebration for everyone and just the chance of the city of Jacksonville to look at this as love, acceptance and forgiveness," McBath said. "You have to look at this with love, acceptance and forgiveness, otherwise the work that we're doing and the legacy for Jordan can't live on."
The Landing on Feb. 16 will be filled with free food, performances and music. It will be a day to remind people how precious life is and how important it is to fight for change when they feel it's right.
"I used to always say to him, 'I see you as a social activist, I see you as someone motivating people, bringing people together, making a difference,' and that's what we get to do through Jordan's legacy is make a difference for everyone, and what more could you ask for than that?" McBath said.
The celebration of Jordan's life and the lives of other victims of gun violence will be from 1-5 p.m. Feb. 16.
Jordan's parents are working with the mayor's office to try to make Feb. 16 Jordan Russell Davis Day for years to come, but they say even if it's just this one time, they're so grateful for it.
Dunn remains in jail on a murder charge. He's scheduled back in court next week.
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