Kalamazoo FC hosted tribute game for Tyler Smith scholarship
KALAMAZOO, Mich. (NEWSCHANNEL 3) - The youngest person killed during the Kalamazoo County shooting rampage was honored on Saturday with a soccer game to pay tribute to the teen through a sport he loved and raise money for a scholarship in his name.
A crowd of people gathered at Mayors Riverfront Park remembering Tyler Smith as the Kalamazoo FC hosted a tribute during their final home game.
The community is using Smith’s passion for soccer to celebrate his life and to help others, because money raised at the game went to fund a scholarship named after the 17-year-old.
He and his father Rich were gunned down outside of Seelye Kia in February 2016. Four others were killed and two more people were seriously hurt.
Laurie Smith, Tyler’s mother said in an interview in June, “It is very important to our family that the bad that took them is not what’s focused on.”
The community has used soccer to come together and remember Smith.
Last month a tournament was held in his honor while also raising money for the scholarship and Laurie Smith said it is moments like these that help her family celebrate Tyler's life during tough times.
Laurie said, “His face lit up when he was playing soccer."