Tragedy struck over the weekend, as 13-year-old Jaylon McKenzie was shot and killed outside of a party in Venice, Illinois. As an eighth grade student, he had already gained attention as one of the top up-and-coming football stars of the future.
After learning about the devastating situation, former Ohio State and current Dallas Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott wanted to lend a hand.
According to a report of Ben Rogers from 105.3 The Fan, Elliott reached out to the family and offered to cover the cost of the funeral for McKenzie. Elliott grew up in the same area as McKenzie.
Tragedy in STL this wkd as 8th-grade football phenom was killed by a stray bullet. I’ve learned Ezekiel Elliott (from the area) reached out to the family to cover the funeral costs. Kind gesture from someone who continues to grow off the field. Sad story: https://t.co/PMUSJOXOHJ
— Ben Rogers (@BenRogers) May 8, 2019
McKenzie was reportedly at a party in Venice when a fight broke out. He left the scene to avoid the confrontation, but was struck by a stray bullet outside the party, according to his mother.
Even as a 13-year-old, McKenzie gained serious attention as a potential football star. He was featured in Sports Illustrated’s “Six teens who will rule the future in sports.” He had received college offers from Illinois and Missouri, despite his young age.