SOUTH DEERING — An aspiring veterinarian described by his family as a “teddy bear” was stabbed to death by a schoolmate at an alternative school, authorities said.
The bloodshed erupted March 1 at AMIKids Infinity Charter School on South Crandon Avenue when Christian Gonzalez, 17, allegedly stabbed classmate Chris Wormely, according to the Cook County medical examiner’s office and court records.
“He was a little teddy bear, always running to his mama complaining about this or that,” said his distraught older brother, Charles Wormely.
According to the Chicago Tribune, Wormely was standing in line waiting for a patdown at the entrance to the school when he was allegedly attacked by Gonzalez, with whom he has a history of problems.
Another student who tried to break up the fight was stabbed as well, but his condition was not known.
Devastated family members said that Wormely, who cared for his Chihuahua, wanted to become a vet. He also played on the high school basketball team and spent much of his free time playing video games and watching wrestling with younger members of his family.
“He was a kid at heart,” Charles Wormely said. “His little cousins, nieces and nephews are all crazy about him. He was 17 but acts like he was 9.”
And Wormely would often look out for the homeless, including classmates, by giving them money or food.
According to his brother, the victim was having problems school.
After attending Lawrence Hall, a North Side school for at-risk children, he transferred to AMIKids when his family moved. While many of the children at AMIKids attend the school for behavioral problems, Chris had attended the school because of learning disabilities, his family said.
“He didn’t like the school,” Charles Wormely said. “They put him in a classroom with lions and he was a cat.”
Since the stabbing, the school's charter has not been renewed.
Gonzalez was charged with first-degree murder and held without bail. His lawyer said that the suspect had been bullied, according to the Tribune.
“It just will never feel right,” said Charmaine Prince, the teen’s mother. “This never was supposed to happen. He was a good kid and never caused problems for anybody.”