Corey Jones’ huge grin was spread across a golden canvas covered with the wishes, hopes and prayers of people from across Palm Beach County who united in his memory last month.
Palm Beach Gardens commissioned Miami-based artist Phil Fung paint the image of Jones during Unity Day with his aunt and uncle’s permission. Throughout the course of the day, people could write their wishes and dreams for the future on Post-It notes and turn them in to be incorporated into the painting.
Palm Beach Gardens presented Jones’ aunt Sheila Banks and uncle Terry Banks with the painting at Thursday night’s City Council meeting.
“The photo – it just warms your heart,” Sheila Banks said.
Terry Banks thanked the city for its efforts to give healing to the county and, hopefully, the nation.
“It’s bittersweet, but we’re totally grateful. Just seeing his smile, it brings back so many memories,” Terry Banks said.
Palm Beach Gardens partnered with the Anita Banks Justice for Corey Foundation to host Unity Day, which included a unity choir, other live performances, games for children and a market.
Jones, 31, was fatally shot Oct. 18, 2015, by former Palm Beach Gardens Police Officer Nouman Raja. Raja has since been fired and is facing criminal charges.