WCU students gather in prayer for Richardson sisters

WCU students light their candles in prayer. Photo by: Daniela Gamboa

A young girl with talent and a bright future passed away on Good Friday, April 14, in a wrong-way drunk driver car accident. Kelsey Mae Richardson, 18, was visiting her older sister, Karli Arlene Richardson, 20, in Arizona.

“On Good Friday Jesus Christ was crucified and my children died too, and on Sunday he resurrected. My children didn’t, but one day they will too,” said Cathy Custer Hocking, mother  of Kelsey and Karli at the WCU fountain during the candlelight memorial.

At 9 p.m. April 19, a small group of WCU students, Kelsey’s closest friends, had a candlelight memorial service by the fountain in remembrance of Kelsey and Karli. Together, the WCU community joined in prayer and a little over 400 students gathered to light a candle and pay their respects.

“I have no understanding of this, but I don’t want you to be angry at life. There will be death all

Over 400 WCU students gather by the fountain to pray. Photo by: Daniela Gamboa

throughout your life and extreme disappointment. Stay true and be honest because that’s really important,” said Hocking.

Kelsey was a WCU student studying pre-med, who had attended our school for the past seven months and had the credentials of a junior. Her dream was to finish school and attend Chapel Hill or Duke University and find a cure for cancer with a career in pediatric oncology.

“She was the most courageous, beautiful, funny, smart, sarcastic, person ever, and it’s never going to be the same without her, but I know she is up there with Jesus right now and I will see her again one day. I’ve never had a friendship like it. We did everything together,” said Grant Sullivan, WCU student and friend of Kelsey.

Students lit candles in memory of the Richardson sisters. Photo by: Daniela Gamboa

The receiving of friends will be held at 6:30 p.m. Friday, April 21, at the Cove Church on Mooresville Campus (197 Langtree Road, Mooresville, NC 28117). The funeral service will be at 11:30 a.m. Saturday, April 22, at the Cove Church.

“We laughed all the time when we would hear people’s horror stories about their roommates doing crazy stuff, and we never had to worry about stuff like that. I never could have asked for a better roommate my freshman year. We met at orientation and she became my best friend here,” said Ally Bevers, WCU student, roommate and friend of Kelsey.