By ADAM SCHRADER and ELLEN MOYNIHAN
Published in the New York Daily News on Apr. 29, 2018
The grieving mother of a 16-year-old stabbed to death in the Bronx on Saturday said he died defending his 13-year-old brother from bullies.
Patricia Gay, 34, gathered with a dozen family members inside her apartment mourning the loss of Alijay Morgan, who was attacked at a nearby basketball court.
“My big one turned around and saw the little one was being bullied by someone his age . . . . They started tussling playfully. Then it got serious. All I know, the kids said they’re coming back with a gun.
“Before you know it, some grown man came up to another kid holding a knife, said, ‘What are you doing with that?’ and took it from him and stabbed my son in his heart.”
Gay was working at Cipriani’s Catering in Manhattan when she received the tragic news. Her son died at St. Barnabas Hospital before she had a chance to rush to the emergency room.
“I was distraught, traumatized, confused. Hurt. Heartbroken,” she said. “He was gone. I didn’t get to talk to him.”
Gay said her older son wanted to be a tailor and designer of men’s clothing.
“He liked to draw clothes for boys,” she said. “He’d cut up jeans, style them up, color them in. He’s very talented, smart.”
His other activities included boxing, rapping and dancing.
“My little one is traumatized. He witnessed the whole thing,” Gay said. “He was blaming himself. I told him it’s not his fault.”
Jamar, Alijay’s younger brother, described what led to the bloodshed.
“My brother was protecting me from some kid that hit me out of nowhere. He gave me a wedgie at first. I gave him a wedgie back. Then he started punching me. So him and my brother started talking.
“I love my brother and I wish that never happened,” Jamar said, choking up.
No arrests have been made.
Alijay’s murder is the second one reported in the 46th Precinct so far in 2018. At this point last year, there had been one homicide. Ten were reported in 2017.