Local group helps homicide victims' families with burial costs

Posted at 10:13 PM, Oct 12, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-13 10:29:35-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Four years ago Jenny Donaldson lost her son, Chad. 

He was only 35-years-old when someone shot him walking on a street in Belton. His murder remains unsolved. 

"There's just so many layers of sadness. It just kind of piles on top of another, on top of another," Donaldson said. 

Chad's murder not only took Donaldson's son away from her but it also cost her the funeral she said he deserved. 

Donaldson could not afford a burial so she chose cremation instead. 

"His ashes were there but he wasn't. You can't look at a pair of remains and see that that was ever your son you loved severely," Donaldson said. 

Most murder victims in the metro are young and healthy but do not have life insurance. 

Their deaths leave their families with the big financial burden of paying for a funeral, which many of these families cannot afford. 

"It's not natural. Kids are not supposed to die before their parents," said Michelle Metje, who founded Corey's Network. 

Metje founded Corey's Network after her son was murdered in 2013. The advocacy group works with "surviving victims' families," helping them emotionally and financially. 

It helped Donaldson get reimbursed from the Victims' Compensation Fund. She sits on the group's board, which this week, wrote five checks to help pay for five different funerals.

"They need that kind of support to go through that kind of issue," said Metje. "It throws them into this turmoil because it's not natural."

Corey's Network is hosting a fundraiser on Nov. 1. All proceeds go to help these homicide victims' families. To learn more visit their website.