The name of the 9-year-old girl shot and killed by her 5-year-old cousin last week will live on in the form of a grant to be awarded by a student at the Philadelphia school she attended, district officials told Daily Voice.
The award honoring Nyssa Davis will be given to a sixth grader at the Thomas M. Peirce School who exhibits the character and dedication to education that Nyssa shared will be awarded annually by the Philadelphia Home & School Council, spokeswoman Afea Tucker said.
Nyssa was discovered in critical condition after being shot in the right side of her head by her 5-year-old cousin in a home on the 2300 block of North Bouvier Street on Jan. 20. She was rushed to the hospital after a 12-year-old called 9-1-1, and pronounced dead at approximately 1:50 p.m., police said.
Nyssa, her brother, and cousins -- who are all minors -- had been home with no adult supervision at the time of the incident, reports say.
Her father, 39-year-old Blake Davis, has been charged with involuntary manslaughter, endangering the welfare of a child, corruption of minors, and more. Police say the gun was his.
"Our thoughts and prayers are with the family, friends, classmates, teachers, and everyone who loved Nyssa Davis," the PHSC said in a statement.
"We have been in close communication with the principal at Thomas M. Pierce School and remain committed to providing continued support and serving as a trusted resource to local families."
The Council is currently working with mutual aid partners including Groceries for Philly, Racial Justice Philly, Bernard Williams, and Hope for Our Future, and Councilmember Kendra Brooks to schedule a food distribution event for the community regularly.
The Council has partnered with both community partners, Councilmember At-Large Helen Gym, and other local representatives who have Gun Lock and Box programs to launch a campaign over the next month, which will distribute literature and safety equipment. The campaign will be citywide and will become a part of the overall PHSC Platform.
The Council will also be updating its website continuously to address issues happening in our communities and continue to serve as a trusted resource and voice for families.
Nyssa's mom spoke out about her daughter's death to CBSN Philly.
“I don’t see no sunshine today," she said. "I lost my baby. I never had a sad or dull moment with her — there’s like no sad pictures with Nyssa, all my memories with Nyssa is happy."
Family members are urging the public to light candles and send prayers following news of a fraudulent GoFundMe being promoted in Davis' name.
"Losing Nyssa is heartbreaking for all of us but trying to capitalize off her death is just inhuman and evil," Constance Moore said in a Facebook post.
"Light a candle, say a prayer, just be compassionate and understanding that we just lost one of our babies."
Nyssa's funeral was held on Saturday at the Lenwood Jones Funeral Home in Philadelphia.
"During this very challenging time, we would like to remind parents that The City of Philadelphia offers families without childcare a safe place for learning through their Access Center program," the PHSC said.
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