Popular Philly street artist helps high school football team honor classmate lost to gun violence

Amberella is helping the Imhotep Institute Charter football team honor Kristian Marche.

Melony Roy
September 28, 2018 - 8:57 pm
Imhotep Institute Charter football team

Amber Lynn

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PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) --  A Philadelphia high school football team has teamed up with a popular street artist to honor a former teammate murdered this summer. 

Star athlete Kristian Marche was shot and killed while standing in his driveway this summer, one day before he was set to attend Penn State University on a track-and-field scholarship.  

Jackson Duncan, a mentor and founder of Focus Athletics, a nonprofit that provides Philadelphia high school athletes access to free academic, athletic and professional services, reached out to street artist Amberella (Amber Lynn), known for the power hearts she has installed around the city. 

You are Loved
Amber Lynn

"The hearts are positive affirmations," Amberella said. "The project started because I was going through a really hard time and I needed to remind myself, 'you are not alone, keep going, you are loved.'"

The Imhotep Institute Charter football team had power heart patches made with the saying "You Are Loved" added to their jerseys. 

"I just got to present the jerseys to the boys," Amberella said. "They are all incredible young men, and also what Jackson is doing is next level."

She also installed the same "You Are Loved" power heart at the school so the students could see it everyday. 

"This is in memory of Kristian and to remind all of you that you are so loved by people you don't even know, and I think it was really important to share that they are not alone and people are thinking of them," she said. "I could tell that they were really grateful and excited to have the hearts on their jerseys and remember their classmate and teammate."