Dozens gather in Central to honor slain toddler
CENTRAL - About 50 people gathered to honor 2-year-old Kaden Johnson where the boy's body was found along Central Thruway.
"I really appreciate it. I want to thank the city of Central, especially Melissa Storm who organized all this here for my grandson," said April Johnson, Kaden's grandmother.
Kaden was allegedly killed by his mother's boyfriend, Brynnen Murphy. Murphy told police he shot the boy's pregnant mother, Kaylen, before driving to Central and throwing her son from a bridge.
The folks who turned out for the memorial said they felt compelled to do something for the child who died in their community, even though they didn't know his family.
"I believe it touched the heart of everyone here in Central," Melissa Storm said.
Storm and Raymond Shook built a cross and posted it at the bridge.
"It warms my heart and I know her heart. She feels good in her heart to help this family out... to know that they are loved," Shook said.
Central Police Chief Roger Corcoran also had a cross made for Kaden.
"It's heartbreaking to see what they've gone through, this precious child being thrown over this bridge in our community," Corcoran said.
The residents are planning another memorial for Kaden's mother.
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