CPS student fatally shot

June 10, 2008 7:18:50 PM PDT
Family and friends are mourning the death of a Chicago Public Schools student gunned down in a drive-by shooting. Ignacio Montano is the 23rd Chicago Public Schools student killed by gun violence this school year. The shooting happened late Monday night in the 2700-block of North Monticello.

There appears to have been some sort of verbal altercation between Montano, the person he was with and the shooter, who, according to police, was in a vehicle. Those two were in the area at the time of the shooting and, police say, the car appears to have been in the area for a while waiting for something or someone. But, unfortunately, there is no clear description of that vehicle or of the shooter, and police are still investigating.

Sophomore Ignacio Montano should have been taking his final exams Tuesday along with the rest of his classmates at Kelvyn Park High School. Instead he was shot and killed Monday night as he and a friend walked along the 2700-block of North Monticello. Lifelong friend Kathy Bailon had just said her goodbyes a couple of minutes before the shots rang out.

"He was walking to the store and when he hit the corner he heard gunshots, and him and his friend were running and they fell on the floor, and the other friend kept running straight, and the other one, Ignacio, turned towards my side, and he was running and I was screaming out his name, but he didn't respond back," said Bailon "To see my best friend die is something I didn't want to see, man. This is the last thing I expected to see my best friend in front of my face die."

Montano's companion, who has not been identified, was also shot and is hospitalized in critical condition.

A memorial to the 16-year-old is now set up just steps from where he fell, while a short distance away, Montano's friends and relatives pay their condolences to the grieving parents, both immigrants from Mexico.

"He always helped me out at work," said Montano's father, Ignacio Sr. He would go to the auto shop after school and on weekends. He was very playful and everyone liked him, he said.

It is unclear whether the motive for the shooting was gang-related, although Montano's family says as far as they knew he was not a gang member.

Still, students at Kelvyn Park High School said Tuesday that in this neighborhood it's not uncommon to hear of other students being shot.

"Probably like once a month. Almost every month, 'oh, did you hear about this guy that got shot?' or 'he got shot at' or 'he's in the hospital.' It seems like every month," said Eduardo Delgado, student.

Funeral arrangements for Montano have not yet been finalized. His parents said all they want now is for police to find the shooter and for justice to be done.


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