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A trip to eat barbecue turned into tragedy for Northside student

It was an innocent trip to get some cheese fries at a local burger restaurant.
It was not his first time there but things ended differently that one afternoon.
Ricky Davila went to the often-crowded Poppa Burger in Northside Houston. He waited in line. Little did he know that while waiting in line, his attacker was only inches away from him. The next four minutes, Davila’s entire life would be flipped upside down.
“He finished ordering, paid his bill and he went to sit down and began eating his burger. Almost right away while I was ordering, it all just went down,” Davila recalled. “When this man stabbed me in the back, it didn’t feel like a knife going through my back. It just felt like someone tapped me. It felt like a dream until I turned around and saw him trying to jam the knife into my body again.”
Michael Kenneth Jones, 30 and a homeless man with a criminal history, has been charged in connection with the stabbing.
“I couldn’t stop him from running that knife through my body. It was going through my spinal cord, so I was losing strength,” the Northside High School senior said.
Jones fled the scene but many Northside residents had seen Jones around businesses in the area. He was taken into custody shortly after the incident.
But that was just the beginning for Davila.
“I recall laying on the ground bleeding. I was stabbed in my lungs and I was sticking my fingers into my wounds to stop the blood from coming out,” the teen said.
“Everyone ran away. I know that they would be putting their own lives in jeopardy but after what happened to Josue Flores, I was shocked that no one helped. The closest thing to help I got was when this man threw his shirt at me and I used it to stop the blood from leaking out. It felt like the world was ending.”
Eventually, the cops arrived, along with medical assistance.
“The cops didn’t help and neither did the other customers. It made me feel like I had no one in the world who cared about me. The only people that seemed like they cared were the paramedics and the people at the hospital,” Davila explained, “That’s just how I felt at that moment.”
Davila was admitted in the hospital where he would begin the long healing process of not only learning to walk again but also gaining the strength to live life again. The teen was stabbed more than 10 times around the neck and chest area.
“Ricky didn’t do anything wrong. He was being himself and even though in the past, he didn’t make the best decisions, when he was hurt, it wasn’t his decisions that caused this to happen,” art teacher Shannon Wight said. “Even though he wasn’t known for being the best student, every opportunity he got, he would rush over and help his friends. I’m just relieved that he is still alive, especially with the history Northside has.”
Now that Davila is on the road to recovery, the damage done to the community needed to be addressed. The Northside community faced a loss in May following the death of Flores and now it is struggling to come up with a solution following Davila’s assault.
“As soon as the news was coming in about the stabbing, I was already concerned about the well-being of the students but when I heard it was Ricky, my heart dropped. I immediately went to message the principal to get more information on his condition, “Wight said. “The sad thing is that this case was a lot like Josue Flores’. It happened in broad daylight, there were witnesses and yet no one helped him and no one reacted to help save him.”
In effort to save students before incidents like Davila’s occur again, NHS and the Walk Safe Northside, an organization started after the death of Flores, have begun asking students more questions regarding their transportation home.
“No one should roam the streets unless they have a very legitimate reason to. If you believe you’re invincible, just look at me. I thought I was safe in a crowded area in the middle of the day and I ended up getting stabbed,” Davila warned.
Like a modern-day Hercules, Davila found strength in his survival and offered some last words for his attacker.
“I hope this man gets what’s coming to him, I’ve never wanted someone to face justice more than him and even though he was dealing with his own problems, what he did was something no human should do to another human. In fact he’s a monster. He messed up my life,” the teen said. “I can’t walk. I have trouble breathing but all I want to do now is pick up my head and get my legs back into the game. I love basketball and I just want to play again.”
Davila now has the entire Northside community rooting for a speedy recovery – so much so that his GoFundMe has received more than $4,600.
“I know he’s strong but he needs the support of his friends, family and his community in order to recover and have the opportunity to get his life back together,” Wight said. “When he comes back to school, I will do everything in my powerto make sure that we set him on the path of graduation and help him see the positive in life again. He is a good kid and just like all of our students, he deserves a chance to live his life.”

Roberto Rodriguez
Interested in education, issues in society and the latest technology trends? Then I think you and I could be friends. When it comes to following up stories regarding the latest education reforms and improvements, I will be there to have my own take on the situation. Nature, environment and conservation are my forte and my passion behind those topics reflects my interest in them. Though I have a green thumb, my eyes are locked down waiting for the latest and greatest technological human innovations and the astounding achievements that the world has to offer. I hope that my writing and personality take my stories beyond the traditional limit. I hope you partake of my writing experience and have as much, or more, amusement than I do.
http://roberto.rodriguez@chron.com

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