NASSAU COUNTY, Fla. – A year after Trent Fort was shot and killed in Callahan, close friends, family and loved ones gathered for a peaceful candlelight vigil in his memory.
Wednesday’s somber occasion was reminiscent of when more than 100 people filled West Nassau High School’s stadium, holding candles to remember the 16-year-old.
During the vigil, some wore a shirt that read “Trenton 21.” Twenty-one was Fort’s football jersey number. The shirts also contained the hashtag #FortStrong.
Others wore shirts that read “#Forever21.″
“I’m elated. Words can’t express the gratitude that I feel for all of these people who take the time to come. This community has shown so much love for Trenton,” said his mother, Paige Hall. “It not only shook the family, but it also shook the community as well.”
The football player, his mother said, would have been a junior in 2021. She said the past year has been the most difficult of her life.
“Every day waking up without my son. Every day waiting for justice. Justice will never heal anything. There’s no greater loss that I can experience than to lose a child,” Hall said.
Carson Murray played football with Fort. He said the memories of his friend will last forever.
“I cannot believe it’s been a year. It feels like it just happened yesterday. It’ll never be the same, you know, when we’re in the weight room, in the locker room,” Murray said. “It’ll never be the same, but you know, we all know that he’s still there with us.”
Hall hopes to bring more attention to the issue of gun violence.
“With the youth, that needs to happen, so that things like this don’t happen to someone else’s son,” she said.
Deputies said the 16-year-old was shot while in a car with four other students in the Spring Lake Estates neighborhood off Lem Turner Road.
Two teenagers are facing charges in the shooting. Both are being charged as adults.