On Monday, Trayvon Martin should have been blowing out candles and celebrating with family and friends.
The teenager, who attended Michael M. Krop Senior High in Northeast Miami-Dade, was shot and killed Feb. 26, 2012, by a neighborhood crime watch captain in Sanford.
His death in Central Florida came three weeks after the Miami Gardens teen turned 17.
The boy’s father, Tracy Martin, maintained that the unarmed teen stepped out from The Retreat at Twin Lakes community for snacks around 7 that winter evening during halftime of the NBA All-Star Game. Trayvon then came across George Zimmerman, who had just called 911 about seeing a “suspicious person in the area.”
Digital Access For Only $0.99
For the most comprehensive local coverage, subscribe today.
Zimmerman ended up shooting the student, who was on a one-week suspension from school, once in the chest after a scuffle.
The watch captain, then 28 years old, was eventually found not guilty of second-degree murder after a five-week trial in July 2013 that provoked nationwide debates on the Sunshine State’s “Stand Your Ground” law.
Zimmerman has since been in various run-ins with the law and, most recently, threatened rap superstar Jay-Z , who is said to be co-producing an upcoming documentary about him called “Rest in Power: The Trayvon Martin Story.”
On his birthday, Trayvon’s memory lived on — on social media.
His mother, Sybrina Fulton, also dedicated a post to him: “Happy Heavenly ‘23’ Birthday Trayvon,” with sad face emojis.
Fulton, who recently co-authored a book with Tracy Martin about their son, Rest in Power, also posted information about a peaceful walk from 8 a.m. to noon Saturday at Miami Carol City Park, hosted by actor Faizon Love with local bands performing and food. Email email@example.com or call 786-504-4235.