Community mourns 5-year-old fatally shot on Halloween
About 400 mourners gathered Friday at the City of Refuge Church in Gardena to say goodbye to Aaron Shannon Jr., the 5-year-old boy who was shot and killed on Halloween.
Aaron was shot in the head by alleged gang members while he modeled his new Spider-Man costume in his South Los Angeles backyard, officials said. Doctors declared him dead the next night.
Two men have been arrested in connection with the shooting.
Mourners remembered Aaron as a friendly boy who had made numerous friends -- with students, faculty and the crossing guard -- at Caldwell Elementary School in Compton, where he was enrolled in kindergarten.
"The world gained a son," Aaron's grandfather, William Shannon, said at Friday's memorial service. "He belongs to everyone now."
Family members, religious leaders and dignitaries spoke from a pulpit above Aaron's small white casket.
-- Scott Gold in Gardena
"There are no words, just tears; tears for lost hope, lost joy, lost potential ... the insanity continues ... our people are lost, our children are lost; lost to a generational curse and until we stand up as a people and not only say stop but do something about the monsters who are living among us, this insanity will continue and the curse will never be broken." -- Hermione, posted 2 p.m.
Top photo: Aaron Shannon, center, the father of Aaron Shannon Jr., 5, grieves during the funeral for his son at the City of Refuge Church in Gardena. Credit: Barbara Davidson / Los Angeles Times. Bottom photo: Aaron Shannon Jr. Credit: Shannon family