FRESNO, Calif. - In the competitive world of high school sports Deondre Howard was a force. In 2013 the Edison High athlete was making a name for himself.
"I know I'll be faster than them, we roll in a small pack so that's what we are going to do," said Howard said in an interview from 2013.
Just two years after that interview he was shot and killed and his longtime friends are still haunted by the talent that could have been.
"His consistency was crazy, practice he's the first person there in anything-- football, baseball, he's the first person there, always, just the most competitive guy I ever met," said Trayveon Greenberry, Howard's childhood friend
Preston Scott, also a childhood friend of Howard, said, "He never came to school, or never came to practice with a bad attitude-- that's one of the things I miss most about him."
"I just felt like maybe his soul probably knew-- maybe he didn't have long. So maybe he just wanted to live every day like it was his last," said Greenberry.
At the time Howard was 21 and playing for Fresno City College.
His mother still deals with the grief.
Police still haven't identified the suspect who is accused of killing Howard in front of his home.
"They know who did it and they got the person who did it, but he's not in there for my son's case he's in there for a whole different thing. So it's kind of frustrating," said Jonte McCreary, Howard's mother.
So for now, a memorial in his honor near the high school baseball field where he played for four years; a salute to the athlete he was and encouragement for those who are still to come.
"I've been doing this a long time. And every now and then something comes along that's different than the rest. There are just certain people that are more important than the sport and Day Day was more important than the sport," said Cliff Rold, head coach.