Viewing, funeral for Miami native, among 3 killed in U. of Virginia shooting

Victim was standout football player at Gulliver Prep

MIAMI, Fla. – A viewing for University of Virginia football player D’Sean Perry was held Friday with the football player’s funeral set for Saturday as the Miami native is laid to rest.

Perry, 22, was one of three people killed in a shooting at the University of Virginia on Sunday, Nov. 13 around 10:30 p.m. while on a bus returning from a field trip with other UVA students after they had gone to see a play in Washington, D.C.

Christopher Darnell Jones, Jr., is accused of killing Perry, Devin Chandler and Lavel Davis Jr., all of who played football for the UVA Cavaliers. Another football player, Mike Hollins, was seriously wounded after he was shot in the back. He was released from a Richmond, Va., hospital on Monday. A female was also wounded.

Jones was on the bus with about two dozen students and began shooting as the bus pulled into a campus parking garage. The field trip destination was to see a play by Mosaic Theater Company about Emmett Till, a Black teenager who was murdered in 1955 in Mississippi in a racist attack and whose death was a catalyst in the civil rights movement.

Perry was a standout linebacker and defensive end at Gulliver Prep in Pinecrest and was named the South Florida Conference’s 2018 Defensive Player of the Year, according to his official biography.

Perry’s teacher and coach at Gulliver Prep touched on his humor and willpower.

“D’Sean Perry at 22 years did what more people hoped they could accomplish in their long lives,” his coach said.

Earl Sims, Jr., Gulliver Prep Head Football Coach, right, coached D’Sean Perry in high school. (Courtesy of family)

On Friday in a somber memorial service at the Sweet Home Missionary Baptist Church in Miami, hundreds of loved ones paid tribute to the athlete. His family said he was more than a football player. They described him as a kind soul. He was an artist with a captivating smile and a man focused on his future, they said.

“He excelled in everything he put his hands to,” said Perry’s Grandmother.

The funeral service will be held Saturday, Nov. 26, at 2 p.m. at Antioch Missionary Baptist Church, Miami.

A gofundme page has been set up to help with the Perry family’s expenses by Bradley Smith, the owner of a Palmetto Bay barber shop. Smith stated: “We watched him go from a little kid to a handsome young man with a full scholarship playing football at UVA.” Smith says on the gofundme page that Sean Perry would bring his son to the barbershop for “as long as I can remember.”

Jones was arrested in suburban Richmond, Va., after a manhunt that lasted almost 24 hours. He is being held without bond.

Local 10 News’ Annaliese Garcia contributed to this story.


About the Authors:

Michelle F. Solomon is the podcast producer/reporter/host of Local 10's original, true-crime podcast The Florida Files and a digital journalist for Local 10.com.

Bridgette Matter joined the Local 10 News team as a reporter in July 2021. Before moving to South Florida, she began her career in South Bend, Indiana and spent six years in Jacksonville as a reporter and weekend anchor.