DALLAS — Mayor Eric Johnson on Sunday announced that he is proclaiming Sept. 29, 2020, as #BeLikeBo Day in honor of the late Botham Jean.
September 29 would have been Jean’s 29th birthday. The announcement comes on the second anniversary of Jean’s death. Last year, a former Dallas police officer was convicted of murder for shooting Jean inside his apartment.
Jean, a native of Saint Lucia, moved to Dallas for a job after graduating from Harding University in Arkansas. Outside of his studies and work, the young professional dedicated himself to community service, often through his church.
“Botham Jean’s death was an unfathomable calamity, but his life embodied a spirit of service and kindness,” Mayor Johnson said. “By giving back to his community, he set an example that all Dallasites can live by. I encourage everyone to Be Like Bo on his birthday this year and let the legacy of his short, bright life transcend the tragedy of his death.”
Jean’s pastor, Minister Sammie L. Berry of Dallas West Church of Christ, echoed the mayor’s call.
“Botham’s voice was silenced too soon, but the day of service is a way for us to remember what he stood for: love, service, sharing, and giving,” Berry said. “Any act of service, large or small, is a way of honoring his life.”
Here is the language of the proclamation:
WHEREAS, Botham “Bo” Jean was born on September 29, 1991 to mother Allison and father Bertrum Jean in Castries, Saint Lucia, an island in the Eastern Caribbean; and
WHEREAS, from an early age, Botham Jean was dedicated to God and started preaching during his teenage years. He was a faithful member of the Church of Christ; and
WHEREAS, Botham Jean devoted his life to helping people who were less fortunate than him. In Saint Lucia, he passionately supported organizations such as the Saint Lucia Boys’ Training Center, The New Beginnings Transit Home, Marian Home for the Elderly, Gros Islet Community Outreach, and Gros Islet Infant School; and
WHEREAS, Botham Jean furthered his education in the United States by attending Harding University. During his time at the university before his 2016 graduation, he was a member of the Good News Singers. He was involved in campus ministry and frequently led worship during daily chapel service and other campus events. He also led a team of students on annual trips to his native country, where they gave back to the community; and
WHEREAS, after graduating from college, Botham Jean accepted a position with PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) and moved to Dallas. He became a member of the Dallas West Church of Christ, where he often led the congregation in song; he was also involved in several ministries such as music, worship, young adults, and teaching; and
WHEREAS, Botham Jean lived by the motto “Change a life today”; and
WHEREAS, Botham Jean’s life was tragically cut short in his own home by an intruder on September 6, 2018. During his life, he demonstrated strong character, leadership, and a spirit of service. He was a man who loved life, his family, and God; and
WHEREAS, the world is a better place because Botham Jean lived in it. We should honor Botham Jean’s life and his legacy by telling his story and dedicating ourselves to the service of our communities; and
WHEREAS, we should all #BeLikeBo and strive to make positive change in the lives of others.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, ERIC JOHNSON, Mayor of the City of Dallas, do hereby proclaim September 29, 2020 as #BeLikeBo Day in Dallas, Texas.