KANSAS CITY, Kan. -- A Kansas City, Kan. Boy whose abuse and horrific death made national headlines is being remembered this weekend for his life. Adrian Jones, 7, died in 2015, after enduring torture and starvation, and after he died, his body was fed to pigs.
Now, family, friends, and he community are honoring him and hoping to prevent other kids from suffering.
The story of seven-year-old Adrian Jones is hard to forget.
“When you get a gift so precious as a child, and ultimately destroy it—I was just so heartbroken,” said Stephanie Knight.
A community group is now trying to turn the sadness of what happened to Adrian into something that might just save lives.
“He was an awesome little boy and had the kindest heart. I think in his short life, of course he went through so much—more than we can ever imagine. But in losing him, we’ve gained his voice, that we can use for other children,” said Judy Conway, Adrian’s grandma.
Stephanie Knight never met the seven-year-old little boy who loved Spider-Man. But she hopes his death will be a call to action, raising awareness of child abuse.
“Don’t be quiet. Stand up. Speak up for these kids,” said Knight.
That’s why she helped organize a super hero memorial ride for Adrian Saturday, raising both awareness and money, to help the little boy get dignity in death with a proper burial and headstone.
“It kind of puts into perspective that we’re not alone,” said Keiona Doctor, Adrian’s oldest sister.
The group rode from Shawnee to the state capital in Topeka, where they hope laws including “Adrian’s Act” will be passed to offer better protections for kids and stronger penalties for those who fail to report abuse.
“We need to do everything within our power, standing as one, to try to make some changes,” said Conway.
And they know their little angel is watching over and smiling.
“This is for you Adrian,” said Conway as balloons were released in his memory.
Adrian Jones’ father and stepmother are both jailed, serving life sentences for murder.