Hadiya Pendleton mourners pay respects at Friday visitation - FOX 32 News Chicago

Hadiya Pendleton mourners pay respects at Friday visitation

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

A long line of mourners gathered Friday afternoon at Calaghan Funeral Home on the South Side to pay their respects to 15-year-old Hadiya Pendleton. The high school honor student was killed nearly two weeks ago.

"She was really a friend collector, I can say. She says she collected friends and that is what she did. She has genuine relationships with all of them," Hadiya's cousin Shatira Wilkes says of Pendleton.

As mourners lined up to say farewell, they shared fond moments.

"We had a moment, because I went to Washington too, because I'm in the vocal," friend Tierra Woods says. "I just remember that one moment when she was in that hotel room, just making everybody laugh."

Others watched a video tribute celebrating Hadiya's life. They say they're fearful of what this victim of gun violence represents in Chicago.

"I just turned 16 and I just don't want nothing to happen to me like that, so I just had to pay my respects to her cuz it's like there's too much shooting going on in Chicago. It's like they're aiming at the wrong person when they shoot. Bullets don't have no names," Adrien Keith says.

Pendleton was hanging out with other students from King College Prep in a park when someone opened fire.

It was a short distance from president Obama's house and a week after Pendleton's Dance troupe attended the inauguration in Washington D.C.

"She just made everybody laugh and she made everybody smile," another young girl said. "She just had a beautiful spirit."

First Lady Michelle Obama will attend Pendleton's funeral at Greater Harvest Church on Saturday, along with senior Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett and US Secretary of Education Arne Duncan.

FOX 32 has learned that the first lady and other politicians will not be allowed to speak. The family wants to make sure the day is filled with celebrating Hadiya's life and nothing else.


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