Mother of top Ohio State football recruit slain in West Side mass shooting

Ashley Griggs, 40, was killed in a shooting on the West Side that wounded four other people. Witnesses told police shots were fired from a passing car as the group gathered in the 4000 block of West Washington Boulevard after a Marshall High School reunion early Sunday.

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Ashley Griggs and her son, Carnell Tate

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Ashley Griggs’ tweets were almost exclusively filled with the accomplishments of her son, a standout football player at Marist High School who became a top recruit for Ohio State University.

“The wait is finally over,” she tweeted early this year as she showed off Carnell Tate’s No. 17 jersey for Ohio State.

Griggs and several other people had gathered in the 4000 block of West Washington Boulevard after a Marshall High School reunion when shots were fired from a passing car around 2 a.m. Sunday, according to a police report.

Griggs, 40, was hit several times and was pronounced dead on arrival at Mount Sinai Medical Center, police said. Three men and another woman were wounded. No arrests have been reported.

Griggs’ family said she was a key to her son’s success. “He’s just trying to take it day by day,” his cousin Paul Griggs said Monday morning.

Griggs’ mother, Angelina Griggs, sent out a statement that read, “On behalf of our entire family we will not be commenting at this time. There is an active and ongoing investigation into Ashley’s murder, and until that investigation is concluded, we will not be commenting. Thank you.”

As a freshman at Marist High School in Mount Greenwood neighborhood, Tate played eight games, had 28 receptions for 444 yards and scored five touchdowns, records show. He was listed as the state’s top prospect in the Class of 2023, according to 247Sports.com. He went on to play at IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida, in 2021 and 2022.

“It was a dream come true to play varsity as a freshman,” said Tate, who began his youth football career as a quarterback before moving to running back, defensive back and finally receiver in eighth grade.

Tate signed a letter of intent with Ohio State in December of 2022 and enrolled in the school in January.

“Our coaches, staff and players are aware of this terrible tragedy, incredibly saddened and they will support Carnell in any way they can during this most difficult time,” Associate Athletics Director Jerry Emig said in a statement.

Tate’s father played linebacker at Alabama A&M.

Several friends and fans took also took to Twitter to grieve her loss and to comfort Tate.

The shooting happened in the Harrison police district, which has seen a 30% increase in murder over the last year, according to police data. Forty-eight people have been killed in the West Side district this year through July 9. During the same period last year, 37 had been killed.

But shootings in the district are down 4%, 150 this year compared to 156 in 2022, according to police data.

Chicago Sun-Times reporter Michael O’Brien contributed.

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