Family members and friends told KYW-TV the victim was Tony McAllister. They said the shooting was especially hard for his mother because her husband, Tony's stepfather, was one of three Philadelphia firefighters killed in 1991 in a fire in a downtown office building, the Meridian Plaza.
McAllister was hit by several bullets, police said. The shooter apparently left little evidence behind and investigators were unable to get a good description of him.
Chief Inspector Scott Small said the Morris Estates Playground was fairly crowded when the gunfire broke out at 6 p.m.
"They were young mothers with very young children under the age of 10, some under age of five that were playing on the playground on a nice afternoon," Small said. "We're really really fortunate no other innocent bystanders were struck."