UPDATE: Teen shot in 2012 gang shooting passes away - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

UPDATE: Teen shot in 2012 gang shooting passes away

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CHATTANOOGA, TN (WRCB) -

UPDATE: Young Keoshia Ford, left paralyzed from a 2012 shooting in Highland Park, has passed away, Channel 3 has learned.

The Chattanooga community rallied around Ford and her family to show support as her family worked to help her. Ford was left paralyzed and required substantial assistance.

"I just miss everything about her," LeKeshia Matthews, Keoshia Ford's mother said.

Seventeen-year-old Keoshia Ford had big dreams and a smile that lit up a room.

"My baby she always say 'mama I'm gonna grow up and be a basketball player. I'm going to buy you a house.' She used to tell me that all the time," Matthews said.

Those dreams were ripped away from her four years ago.

Keoshia or "Keke" as some knew her was an unintended target who was caught in the crossfire of a gang related shooting. Violence at a block party on 12th Street spilled over when the young girl was shot in the head.

The gunman was a 17-year-old boy.

"He took something, a part of me, that my daughter couldn't walk. She couldn't talk. She couldn't dress herself. She couldn't tell me 'mama, I'm in pain. Mama, I'm hurting.' she couldn't tell me that," Matthews said.

From that day on, the young girl required a nurse at all hours. Less than two months before her 18th birthday, Keke's mother was woken up by one of her daughter's caregivers to news no mother wants to hear.

"It's been rough. She fight it as along as she can," Matthews said.

As Matthews copes with her daughter's death, she hopes her daughter's paralysis can be a wake up call for anyone involved in a gang.

"I don't know what it's going to take to make them stop the violence. Ya'll killing innocent kids, innocent people getting shot for no reason," Matthews said.

READ MORE | Former gang member helps fight Chattanooga's gang violence

For so long, Matthews says said was strong for her daughter and the family. She feels weak at the moment, but having relatives surround her and knowing Keke is looking down on her is giving her strength.

"It feel good. It feel love. It feel real love to show real happy how your family come together," Matthews said.

The teen who shot Ford faced a number of charges including attempted first degree murder. Our partners at the Chattanooga Times Free Press reported he served two years.


PREVIOUS STORY: The Chattanooga community continues to show support for the family of a 13-year old girl injured in a gang-related shooting.

Keoshia Ford was shot in the head in March leaving her unable to walk or talk.

Since the accident, the community has rallied around Keoshia's family.

Cleveland car dealership owner Larry Hill, and supporters, donated a 2010 Dodge van to allow Keoshia a little more mobility.

Lekeshia Matthews, Keoshia's mom, says the new van will make it possible to take Keoshia to the doctor without any help.

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