‘Put the guns down’: Family mourns teen shot, killed on Thanksgiving

Grand Rapids

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Grand Rapids police have identified a teenager shot and killed on Thanksgiving.

Aveion Cloud, 17, became the city’s 34th homicide victim of the year early on Thanksgiving.

“The last few days, my home without my son has been painful,” a tearful Latasha Cloud said as she stood where her son was shot. “Emotionally, mentally, I’m empty without my baby. I’ve got four kids and they never left my side. Never.”

Officers say they responded to the sound of shots fired on Leonard Street near Fuller Avenue NE around 2 a.m. Thursday. When they got there, they found the 17-year-old suffering from an apparent gunshot wound.

Cloud’s mother said she got a call from police shortly thereafter and rushed to the scene.

“I’m hollering his name: ‘Aveion, Aveion,’ I wanted him to know mommy is there and I’m going to be there, but there was no response,” Cloud recalled.

Police say they tried to treat Aveion Cloud’s wounds, but he died at the hospital.

“I’ve just been waiting for my brother to come home but I’ll never see him,” his Somaje Cloud said.

Cloud’s mother said to her knowledge, her son was making his way home at the time of the shooting. She said she had made him a plate of food for him.

His family said they are now facing the reality that Cloud will never see another birthday, get married or have children of his own. 

“Just knowing who Aveion really was behind closed doors, it’s kind of sad not getting to see him prosper the way I know he really could,” Zakiyah Laster, Cloud’s sister, said.

The victim’s family described him as loving and caring. They say he was a fanatic about football. His family says his proudest moment was graduating high school two years early and going on to take up a welding trade.

An undated courtesy photo of Aveion Cloud in welding coveralls.

So far, no details about a suspect have been released. Detectives say they have talked to Cloud’s family but they need more information to solve the crime. Anyone who knows anything about what happened it encouraged to contact the Grand Rapids Police Department at 616.456.3380 or Silent Observer at 616.774.2345.

Cloud’s death marked the city’s 34th homicide of 2020, tying a record set in 1993. His family says the violence must end here. 

“We got to do better as a community and educate and get these guns off the streets,” Shameeka Cloud, Cloud’s sister.

“The devil just won’t let up and these young boys are letting him win,” Latasha Cloud, the victim’s mother, said. “Learn yourself, love yourself, but put the guns down. Put the guns down. I don’t want to put my son on a T-shirt. I don’t want to say long live Aveion and I shouldn’t have to.”

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