Tragedy struck during the Philadelphia Eagles’ NFC title win over the San Francisco 49ers Sunday.
17-year-old Anthony Alexander Jr. was watching the game with friends in Collingdale, Pennsylvania. As per a report from 6ABC in Philadelphia, Alexander, who was set to be awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor for his lifesaving efforts last year, was accidentally shot while a gun was being passed around during an Instagram Live stream.
Anthony Alexander Jr., 17, had just learned he was going to be awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor for saving two children from an icy pond in Pennsylvania. Over the weekend, he was unintentionally shot and killed by a friend.
— Shannon Watts (@shannonrwatts) February 1, 2023
Here’s more on the tragic events from 6ABC:
Police say 17-year-old Anthony Alexander Jr. was shot on the 2400 block of Marshall Road. The shooter told police the gun accidentally went off while being passed around during an Instagram live stream.
…”By him rescuing those kids, it made his future even brighter,” said Alexander’s dad, Anthony Alexander Sr. He says his son loved sports, video games, and wanted to be a Marine. The high school junior was just starting to seriously look into going into military service.
…”We now have a young man, who as you pointed out, was very heroic last year. He’s now dead and you have two families who are dealing with the tragedy,” said Jack Stollsteimer, the Delaware County District Attorney.
Police say the bullet struck Alexander and he died from his injuries. Investigators say witnesses and the shooter initially ran away, but police tracked them down. Sixteen-year-old Diamire Hickman turned himself in Monday. He’s being tried as an adult, facing charges including 3rd-degree murder.
Alicia Roberts of CBS Philadelphia offered more details on what happened:
Police say Anthony, 17, was watching the Eagles game inside a home along Marshall Road Sunday night with friends. One of those friends had a gun and was playing with it. It accidentally fired, striking the 17-year-old.
“A tragic, tragic situation, a 17-year-old boy lost his life,” Timothy Bernhardt, the superintendent of Upper Darby Police, said.
…Bernhardt said a 16-year-old turned himself in for accidentally firing the handgun. According to the criminal affidavit, the shooter didn’t realize the weapon was loaded.
“We’re seeing more and more kids with handguns, firing handguns,” Bernhardt said, “and what we’re finding with our investigations, it’s driven by social media.”
This is certainly an awful situation. Our thoughts go out to Alexander’s friends and family.
[6ABC, CBS Philadelphia; photo from Ava Alexander, via Delco.today]