'He showed love': Youngest victim of racist attack to be laid to rest as … – WJXT News4JAX

Khalil Maycock, Reporter, Jacksonville
Khalil Maycock, Reporter, Jacksonville
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The youngest victim of the racially motivated attack that took the lives of three people was remembered Friday at the Joshua Christian Faith Center.
In a very emotional morning for many, loved ones gathered to remember the life of A.J. Laguerre, Jr, at his funeral. The 19-year-old was shot and killed nearly two weeks ago at the Dollar General where he worked on Kings Road.
“He will be missed. I tell you. I will miss him because of his personality he just showed love,” Florine Harris said, who attended the service.
The 19-year-old had just graduated from high school and had dreams of becoming a professional video game streamer before his life was taken.
Harris said Laguerre became a familiar face to her because she frequently visited the Dollar General at least once a week.
Laguerre’s funeral was attended by dozens, one being Tonette Phelps, Laguerre’s former high school counselor.
“He was just a mild-mannered kid, you know, just quiet and didn’t bother anybody. He was to himself,” Phelps said.
Phelps said Laguerre didn’t deserve what happened to him, and was glad the funeral captured his spirit.
Harris shared those same sentiments.
“He had such a beautiful personality. He’d say, ‘Shawty, what you want.’ I’d say, ‘I want this up there, but I want this up there.’ He would say, ‘Move back and let me take over,’” said Harris.
Harris also said she wanted to attend the service to show support to Laguerre’s family.
At the funeral Laguerre’s family was donned in purple attire. When they were walking out of the service, the family huddled in a circle and embraced one another.
Harris’ wish for his family is that they know Laguerre is in a better place.
She also said she wanted to let his family know that he made her experience better every time she went into the store.
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Khalil Maycock joined the News4JAX team in November 2022 after reporting in Des Moines, IA.
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