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Death leads to life-changing gift

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BATON ROUGE - A man shot and killed in Baton Rouge was able to give a life-saving gift to a friend of his in the form of a kidney transplant.

Doug Cossman received the organ donation after his friend of nearly 30 years, Shelby Holmes, was shot and killed while walking home last week.

When Cossman's wife heard what happened to their friend, she stepped in with others to help Holmes' family. The victim's mother later asked to have her son's kidney donated to his good friend.

The kidney was a perfect match.

"It's terrible, that something good came out of something so awful, so awful," said Pam Cossman, Doug's wife. "But it's been a miracle for us... Shelby's family has given us the best gift they could possibly give us and they don't even know it."

Cossman is recovering in New Orleans. Holmes' funeral is at noon Friday at Bethany South.

Police have made no arrests in Holmes' death. A Facebook page "Justice for Shelby" has been set up in hopes the social network can generate leads in the murder investigation.

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