WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) – Jahon Bemboom’s mother LeeAnn describes him as a kind-hearted teenager. Holding back tears, she grasps one of the most recent pictures of her 16-year-old son. She stands next to a roadside memorial decorated with other pictures of Jahon near the intersection where he was involved in a crash on Monday — he later died at the hospital.
“He was a good boy who would do anything for anybody,” said LeeAnn.
Jahon died Monday after the wreck near Dawson St. and S. 13th St. in Wilmington. Police were in pursuit of the car, which they say had been reported stolen, when it crashed into a pole.
LeeAnn and her longtime boyfriend Nick Hobbs, who helped raise Jahon, want him to be remembered as someone who battled through hardship and tried to persevere.
Jahon was just a baby when he and his mother were living in New Orleans. The two fought through the damage caused by Hurricane Katrina before moving to Wilmington. Jahon’s family says he was just getting his life on track and was hoping he had found his way out of trouble.
“He had just gotten a new job at Bojangles on Market Street. He loved it, he was so proud of it. I mean, oh my God, he was actually happy and he was doing so good,” said LeAnn.
Tragedy struck Monday as LeAnn and Hobbs learned about the crash. Now they are focused on making sure he is not defined by his mistakes.
“That’s what his legacy is about, it’s proving that. Just because he did have minor setbacks and minor incidents, that we’re not going to let this get swept under the rug, because he did have a few times where he got in trouble. So what, who don’t?” said Hobbs.
The memorial sitting in the grass along Dawson Street may be temporary, but his family will remember him forever.
“He had a big heart, he loved everybody,” said LeAnn and Hobbs.
The Wilmington Police Department says they are not releasing any additional information in the case surrounding the pursuit and subsequent crash.
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