Des Moines Teen Killed Known as Neighborhood Ambassador

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DES MOINES, Iowa — The neighborhood where Yore Jieng lived is already in the process of making sure his memory lives on.

Oakridge Neighborhood CEO, Teree Caldwell – Johnson says, ” We plan to do that  not only in the work that we do, but remembering the kind of kid he was and cherishing those memories of him.”

Jieng died at the hospital on Saturday, after he was shot in the head on Monday near the intersection of 12th Street and Keo Way in Des Moines. The 14 – year – old lived just blocks away from where he was shot, in the Oakridge Neighborhood.

Caldwell – Johnson remembers Jieng as a  kind and gentle spirit, one who was always involved with programs the neighborhood complex provided.

“If I could identify someone that I would say would have been the best ambassador for the Oakridge Neighborhood, it would have been Yore. He just embodied everything that we are as a neighborhood and as a community,” Caldwell – Johnson smiled.

Jieng’s family came to Des Moines from Sudan in 2002. The Oakridge Neighborhood is predominately made up of Sudanese refugees. While the death has been especially hard on other Sudanese residents, it’s causing everyone in the neighborhood to reflect.

“It really does cause you to reflect on things that you could be doing differently or ways you can take the things you are already doing and expand them to yet another level.”

Caldwell – Johnson expects there to intensive counseling provided for members of Yore’s family. She says his younger brother, older sister and a family friend were in the car at the time of the shooting.

Funeral arrangements are pending.



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