KILLONA, La. (WGNO) — With balloons and candles in hand, dozens of people surrounded Scott’s convenience store on Killona Drive to celebrate the life of 29-year-old Darzil “Zelly” Washington.
“To find out that he was shot down the way they did, it crushed me, it crushed me. It hurt me so bad, why would y’all do something like this to him?” said Charlotte Lewis, Zelly’s aunt.
Zelly was one of five people who were ambushed and shot outside of the convenience store Tuesday evening, including his 32-year-old brother Darville Washington and a 14-year-old boy who was working inside. Darville remains in critical condition, but Zelly died on the scene.
“I used to always tell him son, if anything happens to you, you took a piece of my life out of me. And that’s what happen. I never thought I would see this day here. I come out here and I see my son laying down here lifeless,” said Fredrick Downing, Zelly’s dad.
Zelly’s family remembers him as the jokester, a man who loved his family and a man who loved football.
“He coached a little recreation kids here in Killona, in Hahnville, and the kids loved him,” said Lewis.
Now, his loved ones will have to celebrate the holidays without him. His children will have to grow up without their father.
“How could you tell a child that her daddy’s not here? How? It’s sad, you know, you can’t really explain or tell a child that your daddy was gunned down,” said Lewis.
Zelly may be gone, but his family and friends made it well known at the vigil that their love for him and their memories will live on. Now, those who loved Zelly the most are pleading for justice.
Zelly was shot and killed just three weeks shy of his 30th birthday. He leaves behind his parents, many siblings and seven children.
The St. Charles Parish Sheriff’s Office is asking any one who knows anything to come forward — you can remain anonymous.