LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — As the University of Kentucky prepares for another home football game, the death of 4-year-old Marco Shemwell is on every fan’s mind, including the tailgaters.
The game day parking lot scene is usually one filled with fun and revelry, but this week there’s a dark cloud hanging over the festivities outside Kroger Field.
“Yeah, it’s on my mind,” said UK football fan Les Larsen.
“It’s still going to be on everybody’s … in the back of their mind,” fellow UK fan Don Floyd agreed.
Last weekend, Marco was fatally injured during game time when a driver allegedly under the influence drove into him as he walked with his father. Police have charged 18-year-old Jacob Heil, a UK freshman, in the case.
“To me it’s a travesty that something to this nature happened, especially at a ball game,” said Larson.
Larsen and his friends have parked their RVs for the weekend. They won’t be driving anywhere. But they hope the tragedy is a reminder to drivers of the dangers involved when alcohol is in the mix.
“I hope it is a wake up, I really do,” he said.
A spokeswoman for Lexington police says officers will be out along Cooper Drive in force and are bringing out additional lighting for the night game.
“I think UK police and Lexington police do an outstanding job,” said Floyd. “The only way they could do something is put a car on every corner and check cars as they leave, and that’s never going to happen, so no there’s nothing more they could do.”
Fans say their hearts go out to Marco’s family.