“He would rather have a dead son than a gay son”: former foster mom speaks about shooting.

Friends and family are remembering a 14-year-old son Giovanni Melton who Henderson police say was shot and killed by his own father for being gay.

Close friends of the murder victim say part of the argument leading to the shooting was about the teen’s sexual orientation.

Friends of Giovanni Melton remember an energetic teenager bringing smiles to everyone he met.

Coronado High School Senior Bailey Schultz says Melton went to her school.

“It’s just sad. He was young and he had a lot to live for,” said Schultz.

On Thursday afternoon, Henderson police say the 53-year-old father Wendell Melton shot his teenage son in the apartment where family members say Giovanni stayed by himself. The father claimed it was an accident.

“Giovanni was abused physically and mentally and spiritually for many, many years,” said Sonja Jones, Giovanni’s former foster mom.

Over the phone, Jones spoke to NBC News of the teen she loved as one of her own.

Jones claims she was told by a relative that the argument that led to the deadly shooting was over Giovanni’s flamboyant gay orientation. Jones says Wendell Melton had problems with it.

“He hated the fact that his son was gay,” said Jones. “I’m sure that inside of his mind, he would rather have a dead son than a gay son.”

Jones says Wendell threatened his son before.

“I’m hearing his dad had caught him with his boyfriend before and pulled out a gun on him,” said Jones.

“I hope they throw the book at him. I hope he never sees the light of day,” said Jones. “I hope every day when he looks in the mirror, he sees his son’s face.”

This is a fear most gay kids have when coming out. I hate that this has to be said but it’s so important to be smart about coming out and wait until you can ensure both your physical safety and financial independence if there is any doubt in how the news will be received.

That may mean waiting until you’re mid twenties and out of college for some, and that sucks. But it’s better than being tossed into a camp or losing everything and ending up on the street or being killed like in this incident.

Things are better and safer in general. That doesn’t mean they’re better and safer for you as an individual. Safety first.

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'He would rather have a dead son than a gay son': former foster mom speaks about shooting. Friends and family are remembering a 14-year-old son Giovanni Melton who Henderson police say was shot and killed by his own father for being gay. Close friends of the murder victim say part of...