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Kyson's FriEND Zone book drive exceeds fundraising goal

kyson beatty
Posted at 2:38 PM, Apr 23, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-24 06:57:32-04

INDIANAPOLIS — As Perry Meridian 6th Grade Academy continues to honor the life of sixth grader Kyson Beatty, one of their dreams for the library is even closer to becoming reality.

An online fundraiser to create Kyson's FriEND Zone has raised more than $2,800 as of Saturday afternoon. The original goal was $2,000 and as of Wednesday, the total was $720.

The Zone inside the library will have emotional support books and confidence-building resources for students. Kyson played football, which inspired the name of the area.

Kate Barber Schultz started the fundraiser after seeing WRTV's coverage of Kyson's death. Kyson was killed Dec. 11 last year by a hit-and-run driver near the intersection of South Tibbs Avenue and Wicker Road.

Barber Schultz lives in Delaware. She often does book drives to support causes and once she learned about Kyson, she reached out to Perry Township Schools.

"The outpouring of community support has just meant so much to the family and to the school just to know that he's not forgotten," she said. "I hope it's a place where [students] can have solace and

Assistant Principal Andrew Repay told WRTV earlier this week all the students literally and metaphorically looked up to Kyson, who was a leader throughout the building.

"Perry Township Schools is thrilled to see the book fundraiser in honor of Kyson Beatty exceed its goal. It, however, does not surprise us. Kyson was a friend to everyone he met. He is deeply missed at Perry Meridian 6th Grade Academy," Perry Township Schools told WRTV Saturday. "Thank you to Kyson’s family, especially his mother Amanda, for being brave and helping us honor Kyson."

The school says it's going to continue his legacy of protecting his peers from bullies, and to stand up for the underdogs.

The book drive continues through April 30 at midnight and all donations will be matched 50%.

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WRTV reporter Kaitlyn Kendall contributed to this report.