by Lincoln DePradine
Grenada public service officer, Daisy Hazzard, says she was “like a mother’’ to her nephew Jarryl “BJ” Hagley, who was buried last Saturday in Toronto, following his shooting death at a Pizza Pizza restaurant in the city’s west-end.
“God took the one we loved best of all,” Hazzard said in reference to her 17–year–old nephew, who formerly attended “Hindsey School” — St George’s Anglican Junior on Church Street.
Hagley, who resided at Vincennes in St David, migrated 9 years ago to Canada, where many family members live. They include his mother, Delma Hagley, and 3 younger brothers.
Delma Hagley, speaking to the media, said her late teen son “will always have a place” in her heart.
“He will always be my baby,” she said. “He will always be my #1 and I wish I could somehow blow into his nostrils and bring him back to life.”
“BJ’’ possessed the “sweetest” of spirits, said uncle Floyd Hazzard.
“The kid was not a bad kid,” Hazzard told Caribupdate Weekly. “That guy had the sweetest spirit.”
Hagley and a group of friends were eating at the Pizza Pizza around 1:40 am on 16 October when gunmen came inside and started shooting.
Police said Hagley tried taking cover by fleeing to a washroom, where paramedics found friends tending to him.
Hagley, who was shot in the chest, was taken to hospital, where he was pronounced dead shortly after arrival. No one else was hurt in the incident.
Police detective Paul Worden said Hagley, Toronto’s 54th murder of the year, did not have a criminal record.
“We do believe this particular shooting was targeted in some way — perhaps not him (Hagley) specifically, but the group he was with,” Worden said.
According to police, there was more than one shooter involved in the incident. The cops have released video footage from surveillance cameras at the scene of the crime in an effort to apprehend the suspects.
Daisy Hazzard, who took time off from her Master’s degree studies in China to attend her nephew’s Toronto funeral, urged the suspects to come forward and give themselves up.
“Our family is hurting,” she said. “You may have acted like a beast on the night that you murdered my nephew. But I know that you’re sitting out there, you’re hiding, you’re desperate, you’re fearful and you’re probably wondering what you did. You can’t hide forever; this is Toronto.”
Hazzard described “BJ” as “the light of our family”, but said she believes “some of the friends he hung out with weren’t the best friends to hang out with”.