Murder Victim's Family Donates Stuffed Animals to Children Overseas

Lilo Asiata
Lilo Asiata

HONOLULU (KHNL) -- A makeshift memorial at the freeway overpass where a toddler was killed last week is slowly starting to come down. The victim's family donated most of the toys at the site, hoping to put smiles on other children's faces.

The grandfather of murder victim Cyrus Belt says he got the idea of giving the toys to kids overseas from a woman he met at the overpass. The woman from Schofield Barracks is among the many strangers who have visited the site in the past week.

Randy Kawai is alone with his thoughts, as he faces the balloons and flowers. The 17-year-old, whose family suffered its own loss, has visited half a dozen times since the toddler was thrown off the freeway overpass to his death more than a week ago.

"It reminded me of my, like, my little cousin that passed away," Kawai said. "I wanted for come and show my respect. And after one time, I just kept coming back."

But the display in front of him is smaller now. The family of the 23-month-old murder victim, Cyrus Belt, turned over the stuffed animals and toys that well-wishers left to the US Army.

"The Army will take it up to Iraq and Afghanistan to distribute among the children on behalf of Cyrus Belt," Lilo Asiata, victim's grandfather, said. "I couldn't ask for better. We were blessed with this."

Eight days after the incident that gripped the state, Cyrus' grandfather continues to greet strangers at the bridge.

"Never in my wildest dream I would see this, never," Asiata said. "My grandson is so lucky. He's so fortunate to have the love and support of all the people."

Soon, that love will spread to children overseas.

"I think that's good," Kawai said. "You know, at least other babies or other kids can be happy too, like bring joy to them."

The state Department of Transportation says crews will be at the site this weekend to remove wilted flowers and deflated balloons for safety reasons. It hasn't decided on when to remove the memorial completely.