Family of 12-year-old shot by Cleveland officers establishes ‘Tamir Rice Legacy Fund’ to create youth cultural center

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CLEVELAND (WJW) — The family of Tamir Rice announced Monday that they have established a fund with the Cleveland Foundation to honor the boy's legacy.

The family wants to use the Tamir Rice Legacy Fund to create a cultural center that would offer artistic, educational and civic youth programs  that celebrate the history and culture of people of African descent.

“The arts helped Tamir with self-expression and he would want to live in a world that is equitable for all people,” said Samaria Rice, Tamir’s mother. “Our hope is to keep Tamir’s memory alive through the creation of the Tamir Rice Legacy Fund. I am humbled by the outpouring of love and support for Tamir and grateful to everyone who has already contributed.”

12-year-old Tamir Rice was shot and killed by a Cleveland police officer outside the Cudell Recreation Center on Nov. 22, 2014.

Police were called to the center for a report of a male with a gun. Officers Timothy Loehmann and Frank Garmback drove up to the gazebo near Rice and ordered the boy to drop the weapon. He didn’t comply and was shot within 2 seconds of the officers’ arrival. Rice suffered two gunshot wounds and died the next day.

The officers did not face any criminal charges, but Loehmann, who fired the shots, was terminated from the Cleveland Division of Police. Garmback was suspended for 10 days.

In 2016, the city of Cleveland and the Rice family reached a $6 million settlement in the wrongful death case. Since Tamir’s death, Cleveland police made changes to its hiring process, including adding a review of past personnel files. The division of police also started putting first aid kits in all patrol cruisers.

Donations can be made to the Tamir Rice Legacy Fund at the Cleveland Foundation online or by mailing a check to:
Cleveland Foundation
1422 Euclid Ave., Suite 1300
Cleveland, OH 44115

The family is also hosting a benefit luncheon on Wednesday, November 20 to raise awareness and funds for the center. It will be held at the InterContinental Cleveland hotel, located at 9801 Carnegie Avenue, at noon.  The luncheon will feature special guest Theaster Gates, an artist and activist from Chicago.

Individual tickets are $100 and can be purchased online, here.

A commemoration of the fifth anniversary of Tamir’s death will take place at 6 p.m. that evening at the Cleveland Museum of Art, located at 11150 East Boulevard. Click here to reserve a free ticket for that event.

Continuing coverage, here.

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