Funeral held for slain Kentwood father

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — The family of a Kentwood father who was killed in Wyoming last month laid him to rest Saturday afternoon.

Police found Benjamin Coates, 29, dead on Oct.19.

There have been no arrests in connection to his death, but Wyoming police have ruled it a homicide.

On Saturday, the impact of Coates' death was clear by the packed funeral service held at Ivy K. Gillespie Memorial Chapel on Grand Rapids' southeast side.

Waves of emotions overwhelmed Coates' mother and close relatives during the service. Tears fell from the faces of loved ones, including Cherlon Coates.

She's one of  Coates' cousins.

"It's been extremely difficult to digest.," Cherlon Coates said. "It's still unbelievable. It's hard to swallow this pill."

A majority of the people who came to the funeral wore red.

Coates' family said it's a subtle tribute to the 29-year old father who they lovingly called "Dirty Red."

"He had some kind of force-pull that was unspoken that people just felt comfortable around him," Cherlon Coates said.

Full story on


Content Goes Here