Local family mourns death of loved one

Local family mourns death of loved one

Family and friends of the 18-year-old who died Tuesday after a fight at school gather for a prayer service.

A local family is still mourning the death of 18-year-old Johnquaries Smith.

The Natchitoches Central High School football player died Tuesday in the hospital after a fight at school.

“I miss him,” said Smith’s father, John Tyree.

The family faced a tough decision Tuesday. They took him off the life support.

“To see him laying there, not being able to move, being on a machine that's keeping him going, the only thing that crossed my mind was "Man, you took harder hits on the football field,” Tyree said.

And, it was on the football field where his teammates told me they’re going to miss him the most.

“The first day was hard, knowing that your best friend and brother everything was gone,” said teammate Donald Mitchell. “But, now that I got the crying over with, we just decided to do it big for fifty-three.

John Tyree Jr., Smith’s older brother by one year, said he was more than his brother, he was his best friend.

“I feel like I lost another part of me,” Tyree Jr. said. “It’s hard.”

Tyree Jr. said if he got the chance to say something to 16-year-old Timmy Robinson, the suspect who was arrested for the attack, he would ask him one thing.

“Why? That’s it, just why,” he said.

The family said they just want the community to come together at this time and remember the kind-hearted kid Johnquaries Smith was.

The viewing for Smith will be held on Saturday from 9 AM to 11 AM at the Natchitoches Event Center. The funeral will follow immediately after in the same place.

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