Vigil for woman allegedly murdered by cousin


WAYLAND, Mich. (WOOD) — A candlelight vigil was held Thursday evening for the woman allegedly murdered by her teenaged cousin.

“She had a lot of compassion for anyone and everyone, no matter what they would do or say,” said friend Danielle Farr.

Kassandra Keyzer, 21, was allegedly killed by her cousin Josh Keyzer just outside of Wayland Wednesday afternoon. Josh, 15, also allegedly slashed the throat of his grandmother Sharon Keyzer. She was hospitalized. Police say Josh, who was in court Thursday to face charges as an adult, admitted to the attack.

Dozens gathered at Wayland Union High School to remember Kassandra Keyzer — or Kassie, as many called her.

A vigil for Kassandra Keyzer. (June 26, 2014)
(A vigil for Kassandra Keyzer. June 26, 2014)

“Bubbly would be her. She would make you have the best time that you could have about anything. Just such a positive attitude,” Farr said.

Kassandra Keyzer had a young son and was set to be married in July.

There was no shortage or words shared or tears shed by those who attended the vigil.

“Just an absolute glow. You could not have a bad day around Kassie,” said her former teacher Brian Pavey. “She was on the debate team, she was in choir, she was in the PALS organization. She was anything, everything and I don’t think she had an off button.”

Some of Kassie’s friends at the vigil also know her grandmother Sharon.

“Her grandma was just as open to everybody as Kassie was. She loved every single person that walked into her house. She treated them just like another grandchild. There’s nothing you couldn’t like about grandma Sharon. She was perfect. She is perfect,” said friend Shannen Hartley.

Many were still finding it hard to believe that Kassandra had been killed.

“I didn’t want to believe it happened at all. On top of everything, I didn’t want to believe how it happened. She didn’t deserve it. Not even a little bit. She was always so nice to everybody. And to have something so malicious happen to her, it’s unbelievable,” Hartley said.

“It’s very petrifying, almost. You don’t think anything like that would ever happen to anyone you know,” Farr said.

While friends and family are left to wonder why someone would kill Kassandra, the vigil focused on how much she meant to them while she was here.

“I would tell her that I love her and that she’s always been like a sister to me. And I’m very happy I got the chance to be friends with her for so long. And I really miss her,” said friend Crysta Osbun.

As of Thursday night, no funeral arraignments for Kassandra had been made public.

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