Family, friends remember Mandarin High graduate killed in SUV

Mom heard he was going to pick up a friend 3 hours before he was shot


JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The 19-year-old found shot to death just after midnight Sunday in an SUV on Lem Turner Road had just graduated from Mandarin High School.

Darryl Mack was found in the driver's seat of his mother's vehicle that had two visible bullet holes in the back window. The SUV was in the middle of Lem Turner, about three blocks north of the Ribault River. Jacksonville police are trying to find who shot him.

Mack's mother told News4Jax that she heard from him about 9 p.m. when he told her he was going to pick up a friend. At 2 a.m., the phone rang again with someone to tell her that Darryl was shot to death.

Friends and family said he was in the wrong place at the wrong time.

"This could happen to somebody," Mack's cousin, Paul Maple said. "He was a good kid. He didn’t deserve this at all."

Mack was one of seven siblings, but he always stood out. His family says he was known for his modesty, bright smile and talent on the football field playing cornerback for the Mandarin Mustangs. He started playing when he was 5 years old.

Michelle Banks watched Mack and her son grow up together playing football.

"I just want clarity. I want his mom and his dad to get justice," Banks said. "They need to find out who did this. He was an innocent young man and he was a good kid."

Family said Mack was always working toward a goal. After graduation, he started a job at a nursing home and was planning to attend college in Alabama this fall. 

For his description on his Twitter profile, Mack wrote: "Starving for greatness. Nothing less. I won't meet you there. I'll beat you there."

Homicide investigation

"It looks like the shooting occurred on the east side of the roadway on Lem Turner," Jacksonville Sheriff Office Sgt. Chuck Ford said. "We will be working with the state attorney’s office and the medical examiner’s office to assist us throughout the night."

Evidence technicians processed the vehicle and the area where detectives believe the shots were fired. Lem Turner was closed overnight while the investigation continued. 

In addition to the SUV, the windshield of a black car in the area was damaged by gunfire with shards of glass on its hood and a JSO victim-witness pamphlet tucked under the windshield wiper. Police have not confirmed if the damage was specifically from a bullet.

Police said they were interviewing a couple of witnesses, but had no leads into who fired at the driver.

"If anybody in the community in this area or anybody knows what may have happened, certainly call us," Ford said. "Call Crime Stoppers and help us with this senseless homicide."

Crime Stoppers' number is 866-845-TIPS. Callers can remain anonymous and be eligible for a cash reward.

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