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Northeast High player remembered at homecoming game

Pinellas County

ST.PETERSBURG, Fla. (WFLA) – Jacquez Welch died two-weeks ago, but his memory lives on.

At Friday night’s homecoming game at Northeast High School in St. Petersburg, everyone paused to pay tribute to Jacquez Welch. A very touching ceremony started the events.

“He will live on forever in Viking hearts”

Wearing “Quez” shirts with the number 4, his number, inside a heart, Northeast High students, parents and staff, stopped to remember the outstanding player and scholar.

“It’s a lot. It’s overwhelming but I appreciate all the of it.  I’m just shocked” said his mother, Marcia Nelson.

Before the game, players presented a special memorial to his family, who gathered at mid-field.

In a touching tribute, the Dunedin Scottish Highlander band presented an emotional rendition of Amazing Grace, as people in the stands held four fingers in the air.

Through it all, Jacquez’s mother held herself together.

“Today might be a little emotional because it’s been two weeks, actually at the home field.  But I’m ready to perceive footballs,” said Nelson.

Jacquez died from severe brain bleeding, doctors believe, from a condition he’d had suffered since birth.

The 4.0 student had college scholarships all lined up. On Friday night, the Vikings played for “Quez.”

“It just makes me proud as a mom that i know I raised my son right,” said Nelson.

She said his organs went to help at least five people.

His funeral will be held Monday at 11 a.m. at the First Baptist Church of St. Petersburg. 

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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