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Family and friends gathered Saturday at New Hope Baptist Church to celebrate the life of Letrell Duncan, the 16-year-old who was fatally shot last week in East Orange.

Police say the shooting happened on Lincoln Street on Oct. 3 just as students were being dismissed for the day from a nearby elementary school and middle school. Police say Duncan was shot four times by a suspect who took off. Duncan was rushed to the hospital but did not survive.

Duncan was a standout basketball player who was described as the rock of the youth basketball program that he was a part of at Garden State Bounce. No arrests have been made.

“You guys got to give yourselves up,” said basketball coach Jerome Miller, who considered Duncan as a member of his family. “You guys got to give yourselves up.”

“We also need guns to stop coming into our community,” said Dr. Cynthia Lewis, a community activist. “There are no gun manufacturers here. So, all that underworld trade going on – we need to stop.”

East Orange 3rd Ward Council Rep. Bergson Lenus wants the community to unite to prevent another fatal shooting.

“To those young Black men in our community, I want to encourage, come together and encourage you to encourage us to work together to ensure this doesn’t happen again,” he said.

Essex County Sheriff’s Crime Stoppers Program is offering a $10,000 reward for information about suspects responsible for the fatal shooting.

The Duncan family received nearly $31,000 through GoFundMe donations toward his funeral and memorial services.

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