By ADAM SCHRADER, THOMAS TRACY and LARRY MCSHANE
Published in The New York Daily News on July 2, 2016
Ryan Ginyard and his dreams died barely a week before his graduation.
The 24-year-old relative of hip-hop legend Rob Base was delivering tickets for the big event to a lifelong friend when he was mortally wounded in a Bronx playground, police sources said.
Ginyard, an aspiring dental assistant, was set to graduate this coming Friday from The New York School for Medical and Dental Assistants in Queens.
His parents were instead planning a funeral Saturday for the one-time high school basketball star with a big heart and boundless energy.
“He was funny,” his teary mom Lori Ginyard told the Daily News. “Everyone loved him. He wasn’t the type of person to be out there fooling around … He was just a fun-loving person.”
The killer in the Mount Hope Playground shooting remained on the loose, and sources said the gunman’s target and motive in the Wednesday night shooting remained unclear.
Lori Ginyard said she saw her wounded son loaded into an ambulance just 10 minutes after Ryan left their Bronx apartment around to meet with his friend Anthony Castillo.
Earlier in the day, the young man came home carrying his outfit for graduation.
Ryan was about to hand Castillo the graduation tickets when the gunfire erupted near the basketball court, police sources said.
Ginyard was struck once in the stomach in the 9:15 p.m. shooting, and died about five hours later on the operating table at St. Barnabas Hospital, police said.
The victim was able to give his version of the shooting to cops before his death, the sources said.
Rapper Rob Base, best known for the 1998 hit “It Takes Two,” was among the family members keeping a grim vigil at the Bronx hospital.
According to police, Castillo was affiliated with the Dub City Gang and survived a 2011 shooting.
While there were several people in the park when the shooting started, no one actually saw the suspect in the chaos, police sources said. Cops found two .9-mm casings at the scene.
“The streets are crazy,” said Castillo’s mother. “How do they even get these guns? I can’t believe someone did this to him. He told me just last week how he wanted me to go to his graduation.”