Funeral services held for 11-year-old Matthew Fortenberry

A funeral service for Matthew Fortenberry, 11-year-old shooting victim, was held on Friday, March 31, 2023.
Published: Mar. 31, 2023 at 6:42 PM CDT
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BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - Dozens of people attended the funeral of 11-year-old Matthew Fortenberry, who was shot and killed earlier this month.

The service was held today at the Wilson-Woodale funeral home in Baton Rouge.

Family members say they encourage other young people to put the guns down.

“He was bright. He had a bright future ahead of him. He makes 12 in October. I was just preparing myself to talk teenage take to him,” Michael Fortenberry said, Father of Matthew Fortenberry.

Michael Fortenberry is the father of Matthew. He says the suspected shooter, a 17-year-old, took the thing they loved most about Matthew, his presence.

Matthew was not only a son and brother, but he was also a basketball star. Daniel Fisher coached him and his team to a championship game the week before his death.

“Anytime there’s a loss, it hurts and all we can do now is try to move forward and make it positive as best we can,” Daniel Fisher, his basketball coach said.

The community is hurting, and the family of Matthew and all who knew him are committed to making a change. They hope to convince people to say no to violence.

Although Matthew is not celebrating with his teammates Coach Fisher stands beside these young men in continuing Matthew’s legacy.

“When we win championships in our school, we hang a banner. That is important to the kids that their name gets to live on forever in the schools. So that was one of the motivating things I used, and that was one of the things he was proud of. His name was going to be in the Glen Oaks Park forever on the banner as a champion,” Fisher said.

A foundation was started in Matthew’s name and the first initiative is to dedicate a basketball court in his name.

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