HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- An 11-year-old boy was shot and killed outside his northeast Harris County apartment complex while getting his jacket from a car. Now, the young victim's family opened up to ABC13's Chauncy Glover in an exclusive interview.
"I don't know how to feel man. I can't describe it, and you just try to be strong because I know he would want me to be strong," said Darius Dugas' father, Darius Dugas Sr. "He was an awesome kid. I can't ever remember a time when I gave him a whooping ... It's hard to make sense of it."
Darius Jr. was shot and killed in the parking lot of their apartment complex in the 12200 block of Tidwell.
Police said the 11-year-old was going to the car to get a coat when the suspect, believed to be a teenager, shot him in the chest.
"Never would've thought anything like this. I thought that I would die before any of my kids would die," said Darius Sr.
Family members believe the motive was robbery.
"I feel like whatever transpired out there, I just feel like he was at the wrong place at the wrong time," Darius Sr. added.
Now, Darius Sr. is holding on to memories like boxing with his son. He said Darius Jr. was always before his time, growing into a smart, respectful, kind young man and a better version of himself.
"He was so smart and he was so talented. It was surprising like certain stuff that he would stay or certain views that he had, it would amaze me, and I would be like 'Wow this is my son,'" he said. "I remember sleeping with him and I'm showering with him. It kills me man because he was loved so much. I know he was going to be something amazing."
The family has set up a GoFundMe page to help raise money for funeral expenses.
Galena Park ISD released the following statement to ABC13 after the 11-year-old student was identified by family on Friday:
"We are deeply saddened to inform you that one of our students passed away (Friday). This student will be missed by all. We extend our heartfelt sympathy to the student's family and friends and ask you to keep them in your thoughts and prayers. Students and staff may react in different ways to the loss of a school community member, some more intense than others. We encourage you to talk with your child as it is important for students to express their feelings. Traumatic events, like the loss of a friend or peer, can trigger emotional responses that may require counseling support.
The Galena Park ISD Crisis Response Team and Dr. Gerald D. Cobb 6th Grade Campus counselors are available for students and staff should their assistance be needed. Students who wish to speak with a counselor may call or visit the campus during regular office hours from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Mondays through Fridays or text "SUPPORT" to 832-479-2135 after school hours to speak with a trained mental health professional."