Hundreds gather to remember teen killed in accidental shooting at school parking lot

Published: Jun. 24, 2014 at 1:39 AM CDT|Updated: Jun. 25, 2014 at 2:53 AM CDT
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Fellow ball players signed a football in honor of the teen. (Source: KFVS multimedia journalist...
Fellow ball players signed a football in honor of the teen. (Source: KFVS multimedia journalist Nick Chabarria)
The Kelly School District confirms one student was injured by a firearm in the school parking...
The Kelly School District confirms one student was injured by a firearm in the school parking lot. (Source: KFVS)
(Source: Nick Chabarria/KFVS)
(Source: Nick Chabarria/KFVS)
(Source: Nick Chabarria/KFVS)
(Source: Nick Chabarria/KFVS)

BENTON, MO (KFVS) - Hundreds of people paid their respects at Kelly High School on Tuesday. There were a lot of flowers, signs and balloons to remember Kaden Robert.

To many there, he was special, playing baseball and football. His friends say Robert wasn't the biggest guy, but no one questioned his heart.

Whether it was on the field or off the field, they say he was one of a kind.

"He had great determination, great spirit," friend Dylen Gadberry said. "He always in a good mood and just had a great attitude about sports in general. It didn't matter if you were winning or losing, he was right there on the line."

With permission from the family, Sheriff Rick Walter released Robert's name.

The Scott County Sheriff's Office said they believe no foul play was involved in his death.

According to Sheriff Walter, they received a 911 call at about 8:16 p.m. on Monday, June 23 of a person shot at Kelly School on Highway 77.

He said responding officers found 15-year-old Kaden Robert of Benton, Mo. unresponsive with a gunshot wound to the head. He said Robert was in a vehicle on the parking lot when they arrived on the scene.

Robert was taken to a hospital where he was later pronounced dead.

According to Walter, the preliminary investigation revealed the four juvenile boys went to Kelly school to play basketball late on Monday afternoon. One of the boys provided transportation by using his grandfather's truck which had two guns inside.

Walter said after basketball, the four boys and Robert returned to the truck with plans to go to the victim's home. It was reported that a person in the truck passed a handgun to Robert and the handgun accidentally went off, hitting him in the head.

According to Walter, at this point in the investigation, there is no reason to believe any foul play was involved. He said these young men were all good friends and spent a lot of time together.

Walter said this is a very unfortunate incident and it will touch the lives of many people for years to come.

Scott Co. R-IV Superintendent Fara Jones released the followed statement on Tuesday:

"Unfortunately, a tragic event has occurred at our District. Yesterday evening, after school hours, a student was injured by a firearm on the District's school parking lot and has been hospitalized. Our hearts and prayers are with the injured student and his family at this time. The District prohibits the presence of firearms or weapons on the premises of its school. The District takes this matter very seriously and is cooperating fully with law enforcement in its investigation of this matter."

"He never knew a stranger, he would go out and meet and anybody," Karen Powers, the principal at St. Dennis School in Benton, said. "He would do anything for anybody. Hopefully people just remember all those good things and all those good times they spent with him and just remember that wonderful smile he had."

Jones said there was a gathering near the Kelly High School football field on Tuesday, June 24 at 5 p.m. for Kaden Robert.

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