78ºF

Vigil held to remember 18-year-old Pompano Beach man on anniversary of his death

Brian Wallace Jr. was shot on Valentine’s Day last year, died next day

POMPANO BEACH, Fla. – A tribute was held for a 18-year-old Pompano Beach man who was shot on Valentine's Day last year and died the next day.

Family members hosted a candlelight vigil Saturday night on the anniversary of Brian Wallace Jr.'s death to remember his life and to remind people that investigators need help in this case.

At Apollo Park in Pompano Beach, surrounded by the light of friends and family, 11-year-old Mayjor Blue honored his big brother.

“On this day, he died last year,” Mayjor Blue said.

“Anybody who knows anything, we want you to come forward because you can see he was really loved,” said Luis Blue, Wallace’s stepfather. “He was a good kid. He didn’t deserve this.”

“I miss my son calling me,” said Onishi Blue, Wallace’s mother.

Onishi Blue said her father painted this portrait of her and her firstborn son, Brian Bernard "BJ" Wallace Jr.
Onishi Blue said her father painted this portrait of her and her firstborn son, Brian Bernard "BJ" Wallace Jr. (Courtesy of Family)

Onishi Blue took in that this day marks her husband's birthday, her wedding anniversary and the moment she lost her firstborn son.

“BJ taught me how to be a mom, how to sacrifice, how to love," Onishi Blue said. "He taught me everything.”

Last year on Valentine's Day just after 9:30 p.m., investigators said the 18-year-old was at Apollo Park with some friends playing a card game when gunmen approached, demanding money.

As the card players ran for their lives, the armed robbers opened fire and a bullet struck Wallace. He would die from his injuries at the hospital early the next morning.

“He was 18. They took everything away from him,” Onishi Blue said.

The aspiring electrician and Blanche Ely High School graduate had just started a custodial job with Broward County Schools at the time of his death.

“I want the people to know I am going to continue to fight,” Onishi Blue said.

There is a reward of up to $3,000 for information leading to an arrest.
There is a reward of up to $3,000 for information leading to an arrest. (Courtesy: Broward Crime Stoppers)

In his obituary, his family wrote about Brian Bernard “BJ” Wallace, Jr. that “BJ will be sorely missed and his spirit of togetherness will forever be cherished.”

During the vigil, his stepfather said it is during the happiest of times that they miss him the most. That’s because when family and friends gather in laughter and in celebration, they wish he was there with them, and they wish he could walk into the door and be together with them.

Broward Crime Stoppers has a billboard on I-95 south of Oakland Park Boulevard. There is a reward of up to $3,000 for information leading to an arrest.

Anyone who has any information in the case is asked to give Crime Stoppers a call at 954-493-TIPS (8477).


About the Author: