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Ottawa Co. teen trying to raise money to bury friend
OTTAWA COUNTY, Mich. (NEWSCHANNEL 3) - Tuesday night, a West Michigan teenager is furiously baking to help raise money to bury her friend, 16-year-old Brandon Kuiper.
Ottawa County Detectives say he was shot in the face, and killed by 18-year-old Richard Usher last Wednesday.
Investigators say the two were friends and they were playing Russian roulette in the basement of Usher's parents' home.
From homemade carmel corn to some of the best jerky you'll find, Kielei Ghursul is putting together what looks like far more than a bake sale.
It's all for a friend who she badly wishes she was baking with, instead of for.
"He was just a really happy guy most of the time," she recalled. "He knew how to make people smile, laugh; even when you were at your lowest."
Her lowest was where she found herself when a friend told her about Kuiper's death.
"I guess the first thing that hit me, I was angry because they were screwing around and being stupid," she said. "But then Richie (Usher)'s a good friend too, and I just thought about how he's feeling right now and we lost two really good friends because of this."
Another struggle is knowing that she was very nearly with Kuiper that night.
"He texted me, asking if I wanted to go hang out with them, and yeah, obviously I didn't," Ghursul said.
She wishes now that she had gone, believing things may have been different, but she doesn't believe her friends were playing Russian roulette.
"I don't think they would be that stupid; I k now that they had messed around with guns, they had pointed them at each other, but they were never loaded; they always made sure they weren't," she explained. "So I think this time they just weren't careful enough."
Now, instead of talking about the future with her friend, she's raising money to put him in the ground.