Collinwood community hold balloon launch in memory of teen murder victim

Victim's mother calling for peace

CLEVELAND - Reginald Johnson should be celebrating his 17th birthday Thursday.  But on December 3, 2013, he was shot as he left a basketball game at Collinwood High School. He died 17 days later.

His family and friends gathered at a makeshift memorial behind the school Thursday for a balloon launch in his memory. 

"I'm on a path of wanting to let other mothers and other people know that the way that this anger that our children are carrying, that they don't have to be angry," Regina Hannett said.

Johnson was the youngest of Hannett's three children. He was also one of 88 murder victims in Cleveland last year.

His shooting was gang related, a problem that Cleveland City Councilman Mike Polensek is working with law enforcement to solve.

"We can't give you all the details," he said, "but's there's been a series of meetings and discussions to deal with the individuals that are causing the problems and hope to show them the light."

Hannett is hoping her son's killer will come forward and that justice will be served.  But she doesn't hate him.

"I forgive him," she said.

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