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At Nolan Catholic High School, Jackson Weller was that baseball player who coaches dream about, a star on the field and a player who helped his younger teammates.
“He was a terrific kid,” said Nolan athletic director Rene Ramirez in a telephone interview with the Fort Worth Star-Telegram on Monday afternoon. “He was a good spirit.”
Weller, a University of New Mexico baseball player and graduate of Nolan High School, was shot and killed early Saturday outside of an Albuquerque club, according to university officials and Albuquerque police.
Weller, 23, of Keller, was a junior at the university.
Albuquerque police had no suspects in custody Monday.
UNM Director of Athletics Eddie Nunez said the shooting has shocked the university.
“The loss of Jackson Weller is devastating to the entire Lobo family,” Nunez said in a prepared statement over the weekend. “He was a very special young man whose absence will be deeply felt.”
Albuquerque police responded to the shooting call about 2:15 a.m. Saturday at the Imbibe Nob Hill, a bar on Central Avenue.
When they arrived, Albuquerque police found a man later identified as Weller on the ground outside of the club. He was taken to a local hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
Several people who were inside of the club told the Albuquerque Journal they heard a single gunshot outside and rushed out to see what had happened. In the street, Weller was on the ground.
Albuquerque police have not released any information on a motive for the shooting.
University officials said Weller was a member of the team in the fall of 2018, but he had suffered an injury. He had planned on rejoining the team in the fall.
The Lobos baseball team postponed its final two games against the Air Force Falcons following the fatal shooting.
“On behalf of Lobo Athletics and The University of New Mexico, I would like to extend our sincerest condolences to his family, friends, teammates and all who knew him. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers,” Nunez said. “Our immediate focus will be on continuing to support all who are affected as they cope with this senseless tragedy.”
Weller played baseball at Nolan, graduating in 2014. Ramirez was Weller’s coach in 2014.
“He really had a sense of humor,” his former coach said. “He kept us all loose.”
But Ramirez said Weller was an intense player as a pitcher and an infielder.
“He was just an outstanding player,” Ramirez said.
After graduation, Weller played baseball at a junior college in Arizona and transferred to New Mexico last year.
“I would still see him from time to time because he has a younger sister who goes here,” Ramirez said. “He had such wonderful parents. It’s all a shame on what happened.”