‘Devastated’ parents of 11-year-old Kyhara Tay visit crime scene

The heartbroken parents of an 11-year-old girl who was struck senseless by a stray bullet made a tearful visit to the Bronx sidewalk on Tuesday, where she was fatally shot.

Kyhara Tay’s parents and grandmother mourned the slain girl at a makeshift memorial growing outside a nail salon on Fox Street where the girl was hit in the stomach and fatally wounded around 5pm on Monday.

Dressed in black, her mother knelt and prayed while sobbing at the scene.

“Why she?” shouted a relative.

“RIP KyKy,” the girl’s mother wrote on a balloon — one of several released into the sky.

“We just want justice,” Norka Sanchez, Kyhara’s aunt. said at the monument. “Justice for Kyhara. That’s all I can say.

“We’re talking 11 years here,” she continued, “with her whole future. The whole family is devastated. At this time we cannot bring them back. But we want someone to say something. Please please. Say something if you know.”

Kyhara Tay's mother (left) and father and family members weep next to a street sign with stuffed animals and flowers.
Kyhara Tay’s mother, Linke, and father lost their daughter to a stray bullet on Monday.
Robert Miller for the NY Post
A family gathered on a street corner in front of a nail salon. The makeshift memorial includes balloons and a sign that reads "Justice for Kyhara."
Kyhara Tay’s family gathered at the memorial on Fox Street off Westchester Ave, Bronx, NYC.
Robert Miller for the NY Post

The girl was named after the cub Kiara in Disney’s animated film The Lion King II, with the addition of ‘Y’ and ‘H’ – her mother’s initials.

“Father tells me that Kyhara is the daughter of lions because the family is so close together that they are always together like a pack,” an NYPD spokesman said in an interview with the family.

He said the girl also likes to refer to herself as “Camborican” to reflect her heritage — her father is Cambodian and her mother is Puerto Rican.

Police said the gunman opened fire on a group of men nearby but instead hit the innocent girl, who stumbled into the drawing room, shocked and bleeding.

She was taken to Lincoln Hospital, where she was pronounced dead.

Kyhara Tay makes a peace sign
Kyahara Tay was just 11 years old.

Police released surveillance footage of the shooting but have not made an arrest in the case as of Tuesday afternoon.

“They’re comfortable walking around with guns, they’re comfortable chasing people at 3 or 4 p.m.,” said Councilman Rafael Salamanca, who represents the South Bronx.

“They’re comfortable just taking pictures, regardless of who they’re taking pictures of, whether there are children or young people in our community,” he said. “And it’s wrong.”

Kyhara’s death is the latest in a series of shootings targeting young people in the Big Apple.

Last Wednesday, the 17-year-old son of an NYPD cop was shot in the arm across from his Queens high school. A 14-year-old boy was shot in the arm and a 15-year-old boy in the leg by two gunmen last Thursday night in the Bronx.

An NYPD officer attaches himself to street mail signage for information leading to the killer's arrest.
An NYPD officer puts up signs with information leading to the arrest of Kyhara Tay’s killer.
Robert Miller for the NY Post

Two nights earlier, a 17-year-old boy was fatally shot outside a Bronx grocery store.

Earlier this month, an 18-year-old girl was shot in the lobby of a Crown Heights building, while a 13-year-old and 14-year-old were shot dead outside of Central Park.

Last month, a 14-year-old girl was hit in the neck by a stray bullet and two 18-year-old boys were also shot dead in a gang-caused hit, police said. All three teenagers survived the shooting.

In March, a 3-year-old girl was injured leaving a daycare center in Brownsville, Brooklyn, with her father, and 12-year-old Kade Lewin was shot dead in East Flatbush as he sat in a parked minivan eating dinner. ‘Devastated’ parents of 11-year-old Kyhara Tay visit crime scene


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