CHESTERFIELD, VA (WWBT) - A grieving Henrico mother is speaking out for the first time since her son was shot and killed in Norfolk Friday night.
Nick Ackies was a freshman football player at Norfolk State. Police say a former NSU football player and Chesterfield native, 22-year-old Jaquan Anderson, shot and killed Ackies.
Ruth Ackies, Nick's mother, wants to share Nick's story to remember him and the way he helped her.
Gathered around mom, the family remembers Nick for the laughter he filled their lives with and the cuteness long before the days of college football.
"They look like little marshmallow guys, Michelin Tire boys. They're going to hurt each other too much," Ruth said looking at a photo of Nick from youth football.
From pee-wee through Douglas-Freeman, to Norfolk State. Friday night Nick planned to come home for the Freeman football game - no one more excited than mom.
"His last text message was 'I'll see you tomorrooowww...' all spelled out. And 'I love you,'" Ruth told NBC12.
In the hallway, circled on the calendar is the day after he was supposed to come home. His first homecoming game as a college player.
But Nick never made it home Friday. Ruth got a phone call late that night, from Nick's coach.
"So my first thing was 'what's wrong?' and he started crying and he said, 'we've lost Nick.' and I was like 'what do you mean we've lost Nick?'" said Ruth.
Suspended in disbelieve, Ruth heard from the coach and the Norfolk Police that they found her son shot and killed inside of a Norfolk apartment.
"Who does that to our children?…I want my boy back. I miss you so much," said Ruth.
Ruth says Nick was the youngest and had to grow up fast. Her daughter died suddenly when she was a teenager.
"Not only have I lost my daughter, now I've lost my baby boy," Ruth said.
In the boy's bedroom are the trophies and the photos - baseball too. Lying on the nightstand is his ball glove. Nick was going to be a two-sport athlete at NSU, and his passion truly rested with baseball.
Now a glove rests by his bedside, and mom knows Nick is at peace - up there, with his sister.
Ruth said of Nick, "he saved my life. I had to get out of bed to make sure he got to school, he got my mind off of losing his sister."
Ruth says Nick had offers to play professional baseball from two major league teams before he went to college. He'll never get that chance, but she knows he's still working full-time at looking down after his mother.
The family is working on a public memorial or vigil for all of the friends and family who knew Nick. They hope to have that finalized Tuesday.
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