WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — A college football player from Delray Beach was killed in a weekend shooting in South Carolina.
Lorvens Florestal was fatally shot early Sunday in the West Ashley area of Charleston, South Carolina. The 19-year-old was a freshman defensive end on the Charleston Southern football team.
Florestal was a star player for the Atlantic Community High School Eagles in Delray Beach before earning his place as a walk-on at Charleston Southern. He had not yet played a game for the Buccaneers, who open their season Sept. 11 at the Citadel.
"My heart hurts for Lorvens Florestal's family and friends back home in South Florida," Charleston Southern head coach Autry Denson said in a statement. "Our CSU football ministry, the CSU family and communities all over this country should never have to endure senseless acts of violence. Under no circumstances should this be the narrative of Lorven's life, a young man just beginning to live out his dream of being a Division I student-athlete."
Florestal was a first-team all-county defensive player as a senior last season, making 41 tackles, including 22 for loss, and recording 15 sacks while helping the Eagles to win a tri-county championship.
First-year head coach Jamael Stewart, who was the defensive backs coach for the Eagles last season, spoke to ESPN 106.3 FM about Florestal's impact in the community and his commitment to his family.
"He wanted to make his mom proud," Stewart said. "You know, he spoke about his mom a lot, spoke about his family, his mom, his brother and also his sister. So he wanted to make them proud. So his thing was, whatever he could do to feel like he could set his family up and not have his mom pay for college, that was something that, you know, he was going to work towards."
Stewart said Florestal visited with him last week before leaving for college.
"When he came back by the field, I looked at him and said, 'Wow, man, you (are) looking big, man. You've been in the weight room,'" Stewart recalled. "He said, 'Coach, I (have) got to eat.'"
T.J. Jackson, who was Atlantic's head coach before leaving to coach defensive backs at Charleston Southern, also released a statement about Florestal's death.
"Lorvens was a kid that no matter what someone else was going through or what he was going through, if it was his last of anything, he'd give it to you," Jackson said. "He was always caring for others."
Witnesses told police that Florestal was an innocent bystander. Police said the shooter hasn't been apprehended.