WAUKEGAN, Ill. (WLS) --Malik Brown, 17, a Waukegan high School sophomore and basketball player, was killed in a car crash over the weekend.
Brown's mother said a witness told her another car ran a stop sign and hit the car her son was driving. Police have not confirmed that narrative.
Monday, there were tears and hugs as family and friends tried to console each other as they remembered Malik, his bright smile and his magnetic personality.
"He smiled all the time. He had a big heart. If he see a stranger on the street he'd take his coat off and give it to him if the stranger was cold," said Kawanna Brown, his mother.
Malik was one of four teenagers in a car early Saturday morning when it crashed. All four were rushed to the hospital; Malik's injuries were the most serious and he died shortly after arriving.
His basketball coach recalled a talented athlete who could have excelled at any sport he tried. His team canceled their game over the weekend after learning of his death.
"He was just a great young man full of personality, full of love. Everyone knows him, he's so original," said his coach Dwayne Springs.
His family is questioning what caused the crash, even as they make preparations for his funeral. His mother said the outpouring of support has helped her in her time of grief.
"You wouldn't believe, like, a mother and a son could have a closer bond. Me and my son went through-we argued but that was my best friend," she said.
Friends are planning a weekend fundraiser at hair salon to help the family pay for funeral expenses.