Last Thursday, Joshua Mitchell was dressed in the same green cap and gown as the rest of his graduating high school class, save for one crucial addition: his brother Emilio Hoffman's No. 29 soccer jersey.
Emilio, 14, was a victim of the shooting at Reynolds High School in Troutdale, Oregon, that also left one teacher injured last Tuesday. The gunman, 15-year-old Jared Padgett, later died in a school bathroom from a self-inflicted gunshot wound, according to police.
At his graduation ceremony, Mitchell paused after receiving his diploma, taking a moment to show the crowd his fallen brother's jersey, The Oregonian reported. The gesture was followed by standing applause from his fellow senior class.
"Celebrate loud, celebrate proud so all can hear," Reynolds High School Principal Wade Bakley told graduating seniors during the ceremony, according to KATU. "Including Emilio."
A public funeral to honor Emilio is set for Sunday, June 22 at a church in Boring, Oregon, KOIN 6 News reports.
"[Emilio] enjoyed science and history, but his true love was sports. Over the years he played T-ball and football, but when he found soccer, that was it," Emilio's mother, Jennifer Hoffman, said in a statement to the news source. "Soccer was his whole life."
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