Gun violence in the U.S. has reached epidemic proportions and each tragic victim has a name with a story that should be told. However, that doesn't always happen, and many who are killed by gun violence will go largely unnoticed by the media.
One recent victim of gun violence is aspiring actor Jayquan Lewis, who was only 21-years-old when he was shot point blank while in a Bronx deli.
Lewis was shot several times at B.H. Deli in the middle of the afternoon. Video footage captured the horrific murder which shows a man with dreadlocks and a white tank top, denim shorts, sneakers and a bag over his shoulder step from behind food shelves and begin to fire his weapon at Lewis.
The young man can be seen one moment standing by the counter and then falling to the ground as the shots are fired. The killer is then seen simply walking out of the deli as if nothing had happened.
Lewis was shot three times in the chest, three times in the arm and one time in the stomach. He was officially pronounced dead at St. Barnabas Hospital.
Lewis' dream was to become an actor. He had managed to become an extra on the long running television series Law & Order.
His heartbroken mother Marisol Sanchez, 43 told the NY Daily News that her son showed potential and was even praised by the stars he worked with. They told him, "I see you making it," his mother said.
But Lewis was so much more than an aspiring actor. His mother says that her son had recently decided to become a nurse and was even scheduled to begin classes in the fall.
Lewis told his mother, "Mommy I'm going to the store to get something to drink, do you want something to drink?" The tearful recall was almost too much for Sanchez to bear. She went on to say that she told him, "Hurry up, you know I don't want you in the streets."
His last words to his mother were, "Mommy, I love you, I'll be right back."
A short while later Sanchez got the call that her son had been shot. She ran to the scene only to see police performing CPR on her dying son. She said the call was, "her worst nightmare ever."
She described her son as a "very good-hearted" kid but added that he sometimes "gets into fights and arguments." Thus far there has been no arrest made nor do the police know what sparked the shooting.
Under New York Mayor Bill de Blasio shootings are up 77% year to date. A shooter was recently caught on video running down a city street firing his gun at a fleeing intended victim.
Another incident involved a 10-year-old boy who was killed when a shooter aimed his gun into his Queens home. Only a few weeks earlier a 4-year-old was wounded by a stray bullet in the middle of Times Square.