Surrounded by a sea of pink and white balloons the family of 16-year-old Kayla Green offered a stark warning to parents.
"Kayla was such a happy girl, always smiling, always happy -- you know you'll see Kayla dancing. She did not deserve to die like this. Talk to your kids get involved in their lives," one family member said.
Kayla was one of two teenage stabbing victims on Friday who were found less than an hour after and not far from the end of the parade route celebrating the Mount Vernon High School's undefeated season.
Police responded to the intersection of East Prospect and Gramatan avenues just before 4 p.m. Friday, when they found the two teenage girls with stab wounds.
Green died on the way to Jacobi Medical Center, while the other, 15, was treated at Montefiore Mount Vernon Hospital for non-life-threatening injuries.
Green was the captain of the cheerleading team and an aspiring doctor. Her coach attended the vigil to mourn her loss.
"Kayla was a good kid! There's no reason my team should have to be up crying in the middle of the night mourning their sister. This is wrong," cheerleading coach Mekiyah Knox said.
Earlier Monday at the scene of the shooting, there were already balloons, candles, and mourners for Green.
Neighbor Maureen Martin tried to console the teenager's mother.
"I went inside and spoke with her," she said. "I think she is still in shock."
Three days after the fatal stabbing of the 16-year-old cheerleader, the pain lingers and the outrage grows.
A Westchester judge ordered the 15-year-old female suspect to be held in custody Monday afternoon.
Detectives haven't revealed a motive behind the attack. Although family members say Kayla had been bullied in school and that they'd complained to the school, with no results.
"We hope the tri-state region, from Governor Kathy Hochul to U.S. attorney Daniel Williams, will join forces in calling for resignations, removals, and prosecutions of bureaucrats that did nothing to stop this tragedy from happening," Green's cousin Shanae Heyward said.
The 15-year-old suspect was charged with first-degree manslaughter, assault and attempted assault on Saturday by the Westchester County District Attorney.
Her name was not released due to his age.
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"This is a terrible tragedy and we mourn the loss of this young life that was taken far too early," Westchester County District Attorney Miriam Rocah said. "Our thoughts are with the victims' families and the entire Mount Vernon community. My office is working closely with the Mount Vernon Police Department to support the victims' families and investigate this case."
The mayor, the superintendent of schools, and people on the street all said bystanders witnessed and videotaped the attack and then posted it on social media -- and that prompted a renewed plea to parents.
"Obviously we can't monitor everybody's social media," Superintendent Kenneth Hamilton said. "We don't have the resources. We don't have the wherewithal, and we don't have the authority. But parents do."
A GoFundMe page has been set up for the victim that had raised over $13,000 as of Monday morning.
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