BELTON, Texas – The family of Fernando Martinez is speaking out, sharing memories and honoring the 16-year-old’s life.

The thought of Fernando, his dreams, and the kind of person he was brought tears to their eyes.

“He was always with me everyday.” said Jose Martinez, Fernando’s brother. “This morning is the first morning I don’t get to see him. I usually talk to him every day. Every minute of the day, we’re always together.”

Thursday was like any other day – Fernando Martinez went to play basketball at a court in Belton just two blocks from his house.

“He loved to go play basketball. That was his thing. He told my mom, he was like, ‘I’m going to go play basketball with my friends, I’ll be back.’ He went to go play, and then that happened,” said Jacqueline Martinez, Fernando’s sister.

But he never made it back home.

Police say he was shot and killed by a 16-year-old Thursday evening.

“He had a great heart, great heart. It’s not fair what happened to him, you know? But we’ll just leave it to our Lord. He’s the only one that knows why this happened,” said Sergio Moreno, Fernando’s brother-in-law.

His family says he was a happy teenager who loved to make them laugh and had a drive to help his family.

“He became real ambitious as soon as he turned 16. He said, ‘I want to work’. With COVID going on and everything, he knew my parents were struggling. My dad, especially. He never asked my dad for anything for that same reason he knew my dad was struggling. [crying] And that’s kind of what motivated him,” said Jacqueline.

Now they say the basketball court next to Lions Field is Fernando’s special place.

“That court belongs to him now,” said Jose.

And, they don’t feel any hate toward the 16-year-old accused of killing him.

“I’m pretty sure his family feels the same way. Like if they lost, it’s kind of compared to a loss we have. But we just pray for him to recognize the damage he has done, and we’ll just leave it up to God,” said Moreno.

His family is still working out the details for Fernando’s funeral, but they say it will be held at the Dossman Funeral Home in Belton, and are asking everyone to wear blue because it was his favorite color.