Helenvale community leader Samuel Davids has called on the community to join hands in assisting the family of youngster Ronaldo Heneke, who was killed during protests in the northern areas last week.
About 60 residents from Helenvale marched from the Helenvale Resource centre on Saturday to the site where Ronaldo was shot on Thursday morning.
He was shot in the neck, with the community claiming he had been shot by police officers.
The police claimed gangsters had opened fire on them.
Ronaldo’s shooting has been referred to the Independent Policing Investigative Directorate for further investigation.
Addressing the family and other members of the community, Davids called for peace in the northern areas as the family came to grips with their loss.
“Ronaldo was the unlucky victim who died in order for the truth to come out and to you mummy, all we can say is we are sorry.
“We are sorry for what happened to your son, for the sacrifice you made and as a community we are thankful,” Davids said.
He also called for peace in the northern areas this week as the family prepared to lay Ronaldo to rest.
Davids said children would be sucked into the world of gang violence if the circumstances of the community did not change.
“We don’t want crime and gangsterism in our area. If we don’t find a way of leading our young men away from that life through job creation and social activities, our children will continue to die.”
Ronaldo’s tearful mother, Regina, said at times it felt as though he had not died and would be returning home soon.
“It only hit me this morning [Saturday] that he would not be coming back. It breaks my heart,” she said.