‘I give her life’: Mother works to ensure slain daughter’s journey continues

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RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Nearly a year after a Virginia Union student was shot and killed at a stop light in Richmond, her mother works to carry on her legacy. 

Krissia Henderson-Burrus was found shot in her car in a McDonald’s parking lot on Hull Street on Aug. 25, 2018. The 20-year-old died the next morning at the hospital. Her mother, Kristy Burrus-Clay, spoke with 8News on Wednesday about her advocacy work and the foundation she established in her daughter’s name. 

Just a few days after her daughter’s death, Burrus-Clay decided to turn her grief into action. She created a foundation, the Krissia Ansara Foundation, as she waits for Richmond Police to find out who shot her daughter. 

“I give her life. And I know she’s with me through every journey,” Burrus-Clay told 8News. “It’s been 270 plus days and it’s sad that have to count that with no resolution.”  No arrests have been made yet. 

“I could have chosen like so many others,” Burrus-Clay said, “sit in a corner and just cry my life’s journey away.” 

Instead, she began to work with lawmakers after the creation of the Krissia Ansara Foundation. 

“Krissia was a criminal justice major at Virginia Union,” Burrus-Clay explained. “I gave the first scholarship away in November.” 

After her daughter’s death, Burrus-Clay says she’s fighting to end gun violence. 

“We’re not proposing nor are we against the second amendment. But we are indeed trying to strengthen background checks,” she said. When she’s not lobbying, Burrus-Clay is developing a course for students starting in kindergarten. She also established a Richmond chapter of Parents of Murdered Children. 

“To train the child to give them other tools,” Burrus-Clay said, “so they don’t choose as so many others have chosen which is impacting our safety.” 

Burrus says she’s doing it to share her daughter’s message with others. “I had to make her voice heard,” she explained. 

You can learn more about the Burrus family and Krissia’s story on their GoFundMe page. 

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