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Earle B. Turner treats kids with free 'Avatar' tickets after deadly shooting in December

This follows deadly shooting that happened outside the Cleveland recreation center just 3 weeks ago
Cinemark in Valley View
Posted at 6:07 PM, Dec 27, 2022
and last updated 2022-12-27 19:34:22-05

CLEVELAND — Cleveland Police are still investigating a fatal shooting outside the Earle B. Turner Recreation Center that happened almost three weeks ago. As officers work to find the shooter and bring justice to those still grieving, the center is taking its own approach to restore peace.

“After all things, it’s nice,” said Keilin Payne, a frequent visitor.

It’s not everyday you hear people turn a tragedy into something positive.

“We’re just trying to rebuild the trust to let the community know that we’re here,” said Earle B. Turner.

But at the rec center, leaders say it’s being done, starting with bussing more than a dozen kids to see "Avatar" on Tuesday at the Cinemark in Valley View.

“I’m treating all the kids. I’m paying for everything,” said Turner. “I just want them to go enjoy the show. Go see the 'Avatar.' Don’t worry about anything. Have a good time, and then keep coming back to the center.”

This follows a deadly shooting that happened outside the Cleveland recreation center just three weeks ago.

“I was just feeling like it was just sad how that happened,” said Payne.

The incident is even more upsetting for Payne especially considering how he says the center has been his safe haven since he was 6 years old.

“When you outside in the streets, it’s a lot of bad things happening. But when you come here, you can just have fun, and nothing happens,” said Payne.

A reminder Turner hopes is emphasized and restored as his community continues to heal.

“I grew up as a kid playing basketball in this center,” said Turner. “We used to come here and play basketball, and it was safe and it’s just as safe now as it was then, and so that’s the importance we’re trying to stress to people that it’s safe.”

READ MORE: 18-year-old fatally shot by man in ski mask outside Earle B. Turner Recreation Center in Cleveland

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