15-year-old who died after shooting in Dayton was a champion, All-American, coach says

Qua'Lek Shelton was an award-winning hurdler. (Courtesy/Facebook)

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Qua'Lek Shelton was an award-winning hurdler. (Courtesy/Facebook)

The city lost a champion athlete when 15-year-old Qua’Lek Shelton died Tuesday after he was one of two teens shot Sunday while they walked with friends on Catalpa Drive.

RELATED: Dayton Public Schools mourns Dunbar high school student

“He has been national champion almost every year through the age groups: 10 and under, 11 through 15 and 15/16 this summer,” Dunbar Early College High School track coach Sidney Booker told our news partner WHIO-TV on Tuesday night.

“We have a ready-made star who loved the sport” of track and field, Booker said of Qua’Lek. “He smiled all the time. He was just a happy-go-lucky kid who knew where his talent was.”

Booker said he was with the family when the young man was pronounced dead.

“He was an innocent bystander. He was not the intended target,” Booker said. “Someone drove by and started shooting.”

Booker said Saturday was Shelton’s first high school meet, when he finished fifth at 8.93 seconds as the only freshman among 50 entrants in the 60-meter hurdles final at Youngstown State University, WHIO reported.

“But this kid was 15 years old. He had his entire life in front of him. He would have went down in the history books at Dunbar High School and the city of Dayton as being one of the greatest athletes to ever step on a track,” Booker told the TV station.

“He had everything going for him. He wasn’t wasting his talent. He knew what he wanted to do and he was doing it.”

Dayton police said Monday the 16-year-old who was shot with him was in good condition.

Police have not named any suspects or made any arrests in connection with the shooting.

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