Candles, lanterns honor girl killed in crash

Grand Rapids

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — A crowd gathered at Ah-Nah-Awen Park in Grand Rapids Thursday evening for vigil to remember an 8-year-old girl killed in a crash.

Nevaeh Alston was hit by a vehicle Tuesday while crossing Bridge Street NW between Bridgewater Place and the park.

Family members say she was going to give fresh fruit and vegetables to a homeless man she had met there the day before. They say that was emblematic of Nevaeh, who they described as kind and generous.

At the vigil, dozens of people held candles, prayed and observed a moment of silence. Nevaeh’s family members wept. As night fell, the group launched paper sky lanterns covered in messages to Nevaeh.

Some people carried brightly-colored balloons or flowers. Others placed candles and stuffed animals at sign at the entrance to the park.

Nevaeh’s mother Sarah Hampton said she wanted people to remember the little girl’s “good grace.”

“She was the best person ever. Everybody that knew her loved her,” Hampton said.

A Lansing-based homeless relief group called Homeless Angels will be giving out fruit to the homeless at the park Sunday. In Neveah’s honor, they will wear ribbons in her favorite color, pink. Nevaeh’s mother said that’s what Nevaeh would have wanted.

—24 Hour News 8’s Barton Deiters contributed to this report.

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