Teen shooting victim's grandma gets his kidney

Antonio Johnson

September 29, 2011 7:16:39 PM PDT
Antonio Johnson, 15, was shot and killed last Sunday in front of his home on the city's West Side.

Before Johnson was taken off life support, his organs were harvested for donation. The 15-year-old's kidney was given to his grandmother. It was something Johnson's family says he volunteered to do when he was alive.

Bullet holes remain all over Johnson's home. The teen was killed as he and his mother were talking on their front porch. While police look for the men who opened fire as they drove by, residents in the violent neighborhood take comfort in knowing Johnson will live on through his grandmother.

"It's a wonderful thing," said Linda Fleming, resident. "I read that in the paper, and even though he's gone, someone is able to...gain something from this situation."

"For him to do that or his parents to allow that to be done shows just how loving they are," said Rev. Gary Barren, West Side pastor.

Johnson was a sophomore at Marshall High School. He played on the football team, took honors classes and was a consistent A and B student. Police do not believe he or his mother were the intended targets.

While many residents are glad something positive came out of last weekend's tragedy, some hope the organ donation story does not overshadow the story of West Side violence.

"You have too many youngsters dying out here," said Glenda Terell, resident.

"We can praise the fact that he is giving his organs to his grandmother...but let's not minimize that he lost his life...sitting on his porch...in a violent act in this community," said Barren.

Police say they are searching for two brothers in connection with the shooting. Police say the men in their 20s sped away from the crime scene in a white Cadillac.

In the meantime, Johnson's family is trying to gather enough money for a funeral. So far, arrangements have not been finalized.

Johnson's grandmother received her transplant Wednesday.

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