"The Trayvon Martin I knew was fun, energetic and he really loved to live life," says Markel Davis, 18, of Kansas City, Missouri.
Five years ago, Davis says he was waiting for his school bus in Lawrenceville, Georgia when he met another 13-year old, seventh grader on his way to Richards Middle School.
That boy, Davis says, was Trayvon Martin.
"Once the bus came, we both sat in the back and exchanged names. He was like, 'I live up the street.' Trayvon was fun and friendly, that's why I wanted to be his friend, " Davis told FOX 4's Robert Townsend Friday.
Davis, who's now a senior at Raytown High School, says he and Trayvon Martin would become the best of buddies. Davis says they played football together, watched lots of video games and loved riding their bikes around the Georgia subdivision where they both lived.
"They got to know each other real well and I told my son that's the type of friend you want to be with because the Trayvon we knew was very nice and respectful," says Markel's father, Falonzo Davis.
When Trayvon moved to be with his father in Florida, Markel says he and Trayvon's friendship suddenly ended. Several years later in February 2012, Markel was flipping channels on TV, when he learned his childhood buddy died after he was shot by George Zimmerman in Sanford, Florida.
Markel tears up thinking about Trayvon.
"When I'm in my room, I shut my door, I shed tears and then when I come out, I try to play like I'm okay. Why does it hurt so bad? That was my first friend, " says Markel.
Markel admits it's tough for him to watch the final hours of George Zimmerman's trial.
"It's not like I want George Zimmerman to go to jail. I just want Trayvon to have peace and not be painted as a bad person. That's what I really want," says Markel.