Friend: Kzoo murder victim was 'bright light'

KALAMAZOO, Mich. (WOOD) — Aniya Mack was a bright light, her lifelong friend LaQuenda Watson says. 

Someone who thought of others before herself and wanted everyone to be happy. Even after her tragic death, the friend believes she would not want people to be sad.

“She could be in the middle of Walmart, middle of Meijer and she would just start dancing randomly in the aisle, not just a regular dance, a full 8-count," Watson said on Friday.

Watson grew up with the woman she calls 'Niya in Muskegon Heights where her friend was wildly popular and involved in everything.

“She walks into a room and you know it’s ‘Niya, all eyes are on ‘Niya, it’s just always been like that," she said.

Mack came to Kalamazoo to attend Western Michigan University, where she hoped to end with a career helping children with mental health issues and was already working at Great Lakes Center for Autism Treatment and Research.

“She was supposed to start summer school yesterday and it’s heartbreaking to hear how it happened. She didn’t deserve it," Watson said.

On Thursday, Mack's body was pulled from Comstock Creek and on Friday, her boyfriend 25-year-old Donnovan Lewis was arraigned on open murder charges.



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