Shaqulle O’Neal will cover funeral costs for the family of an Atlanta-area teenager who accidentally shot and killed himself on Instagram Live, according to Atlanta NBC affiliate WXIA.
Thirteen-year-old Malachi Hemphill was playing with a gun while live streaming himself using the phone app. The weapon discharged, and he died from his wounds Wednesday.
O’Neal, who lives in Atlanta, called on Thursday and then paid a visit to Hemphill’s family. He offered to pay for all funeral expenses.
“We just broke down and started crying because Malachi didn’t have any insurance,” his godmother, Shantirea Bankston, said. “We wasn’t prepared to bury him this young. We didn’t have insurance for him. So to have that from Shaquille O’Neal; it was a blessing and very touching, and we appreciate everything he do[es] for the community.”
“No mother should have to go through this,” O‘Neal said in a statement. “I can only imagine the pain that she and all of Malachi’s family must be feeling. I just wanted to do what I could to help them at such a terrible time.”