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Parents speak out after 16 yr. old son is fatally shot

ELKHART, Ind. -- A 16-year-old boy is dead after police say he was shot and killed by another teen  in Elkhart. Braxton Barhams, was shot in the chest and was pronounced dead at Elkhart General Hospital around 6:45 p.m. Saturday.


Sunday morning Elkhart Police released a statement that a juvenile has been arrested for the crime.


Police were called to 250 West Garfield Avenue where they found Barhams near the corner of Benham Avenue.


Braxton was going to be a junior at Concord High School this coming fall.


Kenneth Barhams, Braxton's dad said, "Braxton was a fun loving person, he just wanted to have a good time like any other teenaged kid wants to do."


Kenneth said Braxton lived with him throughout the school year.


On Friday he had just finished up his sophomore year and he headed to his mom's house on Garfield Avenue to spend the summer.


On Saturday another juvenile cut Braxton's life short-- and now that teen will soon likely face murder charges.


Jenette Dancler, Braxton's mom said, "I'm just going to miss him so much and it seems so unreal to me."


Police say Saturday night around 6:30 p.m. Braxton was hanging out with some of his neighborhood friends about a half of a block away from his mom's house.


That's when police say another juvenile fired several shots at Braxton. One struck his chest.


He was taken to the hospital where he was pronounced dead.


"I never thought that I would be here burying my child before I left here- that's one of the most disappointing things that I will ever deal with in my life," Kenneth said.


Now both of his parents are struggling to find a way to pay for their son's funeral.


Bailey McDonald said, "When I heard about Braxton's death I was just in complete shock!"


The 15-year-old attends Concord High School. He said he used to live next door to Braxton.


When Bailey's mom Mary Eggleston heard about Braxton's death she said, "The first thought that ran through my mind was oh my God what can I do?"


Eggleston owns a specialty chocolate business and she declared right away, "I want to donate 50-percent of all sales to help the family."


Eggleston's best friend name Michelle Johnsen who owns Competition Graphics in Elkhart is pitching in as well by making bumper stickers and stop the violence car decals as well.


Johnsen said, " I knew that I could help by creating some type of a decal to help raise money for the family for the funeral expenses."


On Sunday afternoon both women along with Bailey were at Braxton's mom's house working out the details of these fundraisers. As they all were pondering what truly can be done to stop the teen violence on the streets of Elkhart this summer.


Kenneth said, "How do we stop this? What do we have to do? Where does it need to become from? Where does it need to be said? How can we stop this violence with these young kids?"


Many of Braxton's friends have been stopping by the spot where he was shot and killed Saturday evening.


Braxton's parents said the are planning a memorial service and they plan to cremate his remains. A community vigil is in the works, however a date has not been set.


If you would like information on the decals you can call Michelle Johnsen at (574) 350-8578.

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