By John Lynds
For over a week, the makeshift memorial in memory of Duncan Ketter, the young man gunned down on the corner of Orleans and Marginal streets, has had nonstop visitors. Friends, family and neighbors have stopped by the memorial to place candles, flowers, mementoes and pictures. Some cry, some say a prayer.
Since the death of the Madison Park High School graduate who was enrolled in the Franklin Institute of Technology, the community has rallied around Ketter’s family and is trying to help in any way.
“One week ago Duncan Ketter’s body was still lying on the street in front of our house,” said Steve Holt. “His family had yet to discover he was gone. In the seven days since we’ve learned just what kind of guy Duncan was – a loving, selfless, focused, hard-working, family-oriented. He was a hero. This week, we’ve seen hundreds come by the makeshift memorial to mourn, laugh, leave a note or a candle – to honor Duncan’s legacy. It’s truly been an inspiring thing to witness.”
Last week Holt established a page on www.takethemameal.com. Holt said the family of Ketter has said that they would be blessed to receive dinners over the next week as they process their loss, comfort each other, and participate in remembrance services for their loved one.
Residents can sign up to bring the family a lunch or dinner between now and the end of the year at https://takethemameal.com/meals.php?t=NPWC1914. Each meal should feed 15 family members.
Already, dozens of community members have signed up and brought meals to the Ketter Family.
Ketter’s father has also started a GoFundMe page to help raise money to send his son back to the family’s native Kenya were he will be laid to rest. The family hopes to raise $15,000.
“I recently lost my beloved son, a hero, and an inspiration to many, my wonderful son Duncan Ketter,” said Richard Ketter. “His life was suddenly ended tragically in a robbery shooting. In this great time of loss, I’m seeking your assistance in meeting the funds needed to send my son’s body back to our hometown in Kenya for burial. The blow was great, the shock severe, and we little thought the end was near. And only those who have lost can tell the pain of parting without farewell. It broke our hearts to lose you, but you did not go alone. A part of us went with you, the day God called you home. Nothing can ever take away, the love a heart holds dear. Fond memories linger every day, remembrance keeps him near.”
Those looking to contribute to this fund can visit https://www.gofundme.com/duncan-ketters-funeral-fund.
Back in Kenya, Ketter’s family is still reeling from the news of their family member’s death.
“My brother is usually reserved and takes long before he responds to chats,” his sister Daisey Ketter told the Daily Nation in Kenya. “But on Sunday night to Monday morning, Kenyan time, we chatted a lot. The last message he sent was at 1.31a.m. saying “I really miss you guys, I am coming home, and planning to do a get- together.”
Kericho, Kenya Governor Paul Chepkwony condemned the shooting, and sent statement to the family and friends both here in the U.S. and in Kenya.
“It is a shocking and unfortunate end to the life of a promising young man who only two years ago was praised by the US media as a hero after saving a man nearly crushed to death by a train,” said Chepkwony. “I pray that God grants the bereaved family both in Belgut, Kericho and Boston, USA sufficient grace to weather the storm of grief for losing their only son.”
His funeral is being set for mid-January in his native Changoi Village.