Willard Elementary School kindergartner Devin McGregor died Thursday after being shot in Rogers Park on Sunday, Aug. 28. He was 5 years old.

Content warning: This story contains descriptions of gun violence.

Four days after sustaining a gunshot wound to the head in Chicago’s Rogers Park neighborhood, 5-year-old Devin McGregor died Thursday night, the Chicago Police Department confirmed to the RoundTable on Friday. Devin was being treated by doctors in the pediatric intensive care unit at Lurie Children’s Hospital in downtown Chicago.

His family called him “Boom,” and he leaves behind his mother, Javonna; his grandmother, Tamika; his grandfather, Tervalon, and many other relatives, according to a GoFundMe set up this week to help the family cover medical expenses. According to Chicago police, Devin’s father was the target of the attack and was shot in the hand and shoulder but survived.

Devin had just started kindergarten at Evanston’s Willard Elementary School on Aug. 24, and he was excited for his first full week at school when the tragic shooting unfolded, as the Chicago Sun-Times reported. He was visiting his father in Rogers Park when his mother picked him up to head back to Evanston late Sunday afternoon, but a black Hyundai pulled up next to the vehicle and a shooter opened fire.

No arrests have been made, and no suspects are in custody at this time, CPD told the RoundTable Friday.

District 65 Superintendent Devon Horton shared the news of Devin’s death with the school community in an email Friday afternoon, and he highlighted resources for families confronting trauma from gun violence. The district’s crisis intervention team and a group of counselors will be available for students and staff at Willard in the coming days, he wrote.

“While the family undoubtedly continues to grieve, we share in their profound loss,” Horton wrote. “This heartbreaking tragedy reminds all of us how precious life is. We send our heartfelt condolences out to all those who knew and loved him.”

The GoFundMe page has already raised more than $33,000 for Devin’s family. The website’s description says that “Devin is an energetic, sweet child who spreads love everywhere he goes.”

In his email newsletter to constituents that went out Friday afternoon, Council Member Jonathan Nieuwsma, 4th Ward, reflected on recent shootings that have affected Evanston residents, including two minors.

“I’m at a loss for words. What are we doing wrong – as a community, as a city, as a nation? I think we do a good job with youth services and violence intervention. Do we need to do more of that? Is that the answer? Part of it, probably,” Nieuwsma wrote. “We also need more police. We need better gun control. We need less income inequality. We need to end structural racism. We need more love and less hate. That’s hard, especially this morning.”

Duncan Agnew

Duncan Agnew covers Evanston public schools, affordable housing, City Hall and more for the RoundTable. He also writes long-form investigations, features and the morning email newsletter three times a...

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