Jalon Bea liked to dance. The 17-year-old was always there for his friends. And he loved to eat.
“That boy loved candy,” his mom, Jackie Bea, said with a laugh Tuesday. “He’s up there sharing Skittles with the Lord.”
Jalon was shot and killed in Tacoma Friday. Prosecutors say a friend jokingly pointed a gun at Jalon, but didn’t realize there was a round in the cylinder.
Tanielu Lotovaivai, 19, has pleaded not guilty to one count of first-degree manslaughter.
“Accident or not, this shouldn’t have happened,” Bea said to those gathered at Lincoln Park Tuesday night in her son’s honor.
At least 100 people came to share memories of the teenager. Many, including family members, spoke against gun violence.
They said Jalon was the kid who, with a buddy, dropped $200 at Buffalo Wild Wings in a single day. Another time he spent the night at Denny’s eating endless pancakes.
The Bates Technical College student had hoped to transfer to the Naval Academy to study mechanical engineering, his mom said. Jalon wanted to follow in the footsteps of his dad, who served in the Navy.
After the academy, he planned to be a Seahawk player.
“That was his dream,” his mom said.
She wore a team hat signed by coach Pete Carroll and other Seahawks, which Jalon got this summer when he visited training camp as part of a community group.
“I’m going to bury him with it,” Bea said.
Jalon had moves, too, his friends remembered. He danced with a group of friends, and also made music.
An Internet profile that appears to be Jalon’s says: “Where Im from, music is down played because people in my community rap about the same thing, shoot em up, bang bang. ... I wanna be different and talk about multiple aspects. My mixtape, “T.R.I.A.L” will be droppin 11-4-13 so stay tuned.”
Friend KJ Skannal, 16, said Jalon was the friend who helped him through tough times.
“He was a really charismatic, loving person,” he said.
Jalon is survived by his mother, father Ramon Sr., sister Ambrea and brothers James and Ramon Jr.