'Trayvon Martin, 'A gift to this nation,' says cousin

by: Deborah Horne Updated:


Tacoma, Wash. - The cousin of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin who was shot and killed nearly 17 months ago by George Zimmerman is speaking out now that a Florida jury has found the neighborhood watchman not guilty.

Cedric President-Turner, who grew up in Tacoma, said he sent a text message to Martin's mother before the day of the verdict.

'Lord, your will be done, in the name of Jesus,' he wrote, 'I love you Cuz.'

When he heard Zimmerman had been acquitted 'my heart just sank.' He believes the verdict is 'God's will,' but he added, 'I thought he should have been found guilty of manslaughter, at least. If you look at what manslaughter actually entails.'

He doesn't believe Zimmerman is 'getting off scot-free' because 'he knows what he did.'

President-Turner insisted he is not angry.

'Trayvon Martin is a gift to this nation, to the world,' he said. 'What happened to him should never ever happen to anybody else but it shed light on some of the things we still need to work through as a nation. So as far as anger? No. Frustration? Yes.'

President-Turner said he is sad, too. He said he and his cousin used to ride dirt bikes and 'hang out' together.

'But all because of George Zimmerman's actions,' he said, 'I can never see him again.'