Loved ones continue to mourn the loss of Royal Abram
The Wellington Heights neighborhood continued to mourn the loss of 18-year-old Royal Abram Wednesday.
Abram and 18-year-old Matrell Johnson were both hanging out with friends celebrating the end of the school year when they were shot to death early Saturday morning at the Iowa Smoke Shop on Kirkwood Court. Someone shot Abram, Matrell and two others in the parking lot of the Iowa Smoke Shop. The shooting injured two 19-year-old's who are still in the hospital
Friends and family honored Abram at his former school, Polk Elementary. Everybody there agreed his death is something that will affect the neighborhood and beyond for years to come.
"To be honest, I haven't ate or slept since that night, since I found out," said Kat Knapp.
"I've been having night terrors and stuff. I haven't been able to sleep. Not really hungry," said Zoey Williams.
Knapp and Williams said they both met Royal Abrams when they were in middle school and they've been close ever since. The two were part of the crowd of more than fifty who got together at Polk Elementary to talk strategy on changing the neighborhood and let Royal know that they haven't forgotten about him.
"He would literally take a bullet for anyone," said Knapp. "He didn't care who saw what he did, whether it was something he'd get made fun of, he did it anyway because he knew it was right. He didn't care what other people thought of him."
"He was like that friend that everybody wanted to have," said Williams. "He was that good type person. Everyone wanted to be Royal's friend."
Friends said what happened to him is creating fear that something like his can happen to them because they said he was one of the good ones, not one that would even be fraternizing with danger.
"He would get me out of my funk," said Gracie McFerson. "If he seen me down, he would pick me up and say 'hey what's going on' and would make sure I'm doing okay before anything else."
Now his friends are demanding action be taken to find and arrest anyone in connection to his death.
"I hope the right person gets charged because two kids died," said Knapp. "They were 18-years old. They were not grown-ups, they were kids."
Police have named five persons of interest in the case. They have located one of those people, 24-year-old Alexandra Smith. Officers are still looking for DeShawn Hull, Andre Richardson, Colby Shannon and Kenyauta Keith.
Anyone with information related to the case is asked to call Cedar Rapids Police or Crimestoppers.