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Saturday, January 28, 2023



Nov. 7, 2001 – As the police investigation into the fatal shooting of a 12-year-old middle school student continued, teachers and schoolmates of Alphonso Blyden III were trying to come to grips with his death.
Blyden died Saturday of a gunshot wound to the chest while visiting at 2-43 St. Joseph and Rosendahl. He lived at Tutu High Rise and was a seventh grader at Bertha C. Boschulte Middle School.
"He was so spirited," said BCB teacher Cheryl Cooper, who led the four-member teaching team whose students included Alphonso. And, she added, he was inquisitive, a trait she especially admires in her students.
Cooper said counselors came to the school on Monday to help the students deal with their grief. The students were asked to come up with words to describe Alphonso.
"Style, friendly, flamboyant, very confident," Cooper began, ticking off words on the list compiled by the students. Their list also included "courageous" and "bold" — the latter a trait Cooper said held the youth in good stead with fellow students. She said they liked the fact that he spoke his mind, because they always knew where they stood with him.
Alphonso was tall, slim and handsome, Cooper said, and "He was always neat and had a monogram on his shirt."
Cooper said some students have been working on writing poems about their colleague, and some of them will be included in the funeral booklet for Alphonso.
Funeral services will be Tuesday, Nov. 13, at St. Andrew's Episcopal Church. Viewing will begin at 8 a.m., with services to follow at 9 a.m. Burial will be in Western Cemetery.
Deputy Police Chief Theodore Carty said Wednesday that the investigation into the shooting is continuing.

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