© 2023 Kansas City Public Radio
NPR in Kansas City
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Hundreds Attend Memorial Service For Slain Kansas City Teen

Cody Newill

Several hundred people packed into the Somali Center of Kansas City Sunday to honor the memory of the teenager who was killed in a hit and run last week.

More than a dozen faith-based organizations and some civic leaders attended the memorial service for Abdisamad "Adam" Sheikh-Hussein to show their solidarity with his family and the Somali community.

One of those groups is the Kansas chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations. Representative Habib Mir says though this is a difficult time for many Muslims, he believes the support shown Sunday is a sign that new ties are being made between Kansas City organizations and communities.

"Our beloved brothers and sisters from the Jewish faith, Christian faith, Sihk faith, and the Hindu faith were here and they were sending a message," Mir said. "And the message is that of love and peace."

Mindy Corporon, mother of Reit Underwood and daughter of William Corporon, the two victims of the Jewish Community Center shooting last spring, was also at Sheikh-Hussein's memorial. She tried to lend family members some words of comfort. 

"Listening to Adam's family talk about him, he sounds very much like our Reit," Corporon said. "I'm  here so Adam's family and [the Somali community] knows that they're not alone."

Youth members of the Somali Center are now putting together a foundation to help prevent hate crimes and promote religious tolerance. 

The man suspected in Sheikh-Hussein’s death has been charged with a number of offenses, including first-degree murder. The FBI is currently investigating the killing as a possible hate crime.

Cody Newill is part of KCUR's audience development team. Follow him on Twitter @CodyNewill or email him at cody@kcur.org.
KCUR serves the Kansas City region with breaking news and powerful storytelling.
Your donation helps make nonprofit journalism available for everyone.