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16-year-old hurt in Springfield shooting lost brother to gun violence

Published: Friday, April 19, 2019 @ 6:54 PM

The grandmother of a teen shot in Springfield is speaking out about the incident and losing her other grandson to gun violence just last year.

The 16-year-old who was shot in the chest near a Springfield McDonald’s on Wednesday also lost his brother to gun violence in 2018.

Linda Neville said her grandson, Kellen Etherington, is recovering at Miami Valley Hospital in Dayton after the shooting on Bellevue Avenue.

Neville said the bullet hit Etherington’s lung and doctors said it’s too dangerous to remove it — so he will live with it and any resulting complications for the rest of his life.

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Although Etherington survived, Neville said the shooting opened up old wounds. Etherington’s brother, 19-year-old Cobey Etherington, was shot and killed in the passenger seat of a car on West Mulberry Street.

Cobey Etherington’s death was Springfield’s first homicide of 2018. His murder is still unsolved.

“I’m still grieving. You don’t get over that,” Neville said. “I don’t know why it’s my boys. I don’t know.”

The Springfield News-Sun interviewed Kellen Etherington in July 2018 for a follow-up story about his brother’s death.

At the time, he said the gun violence in the city was becoming overwhelming.

“When I was younger — like fourth, fifth, sixth grade — it never seemed this bad,” Etherington said. “And just the past two, three years, it’s been ridiculous.”

Neville said she got the call on Wednesday that no one ever wants to get. She said she raced over to the McDonald’s on East Main Street.

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“I jumped out hoping they were going to tell me it was somebody else,” she said “No, it was Kellen.”

The Springfield Police Division responded to the McDonald’s around 5 p.m. after Etherington ran into the restaurant for help after being shot.

A woman ordering in the drive-thru heard the shooting and ran to help the boy.

Starr Huff performed first aid on Etherington until medics arrived. On Friday, Neville said the woman saved her grandson’s life.

Etherington was taken to Springfield Regional Medical Center and then taken by CareFlight to Miami Valley Hospital.

Neville said Etherington knew the 15-year-old boy who allegedly shot him — at one point in their lives, the two had been friends.

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She said she believes the two boys got into a verbal argument before the shooting happened.

After the shooting, the suspect ran away. Police found him and a gun at an apartment in the 300 block of Burnett Road.

The teen has been charged with attempted murder and felonious assault in the case, and is currently being held in juvenile detention.

He is not being named at this time because he’s under 18.

Neville said Etherington is expected to be released from the hospital in the next couple of days. She said the only reason that her grandson is still breathing is because he now has his brother watching over him.