Anarae Schunk's family hosts public memorial service - KMSP-TV

Family of slain U of M student holds public memorial service

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BURNSVILLE, Minn. (KMSP) -

Family members of Anarae Schunk celebrated the slain University of Minnesota student's life during a public memorial service on Sunday in Burnsville, Minn.

The 20-year-old was remembered as a brilliant young woman who loved math, chess and always sought to help out underdogs or people in need.

Hundreds of family members, friends and even strangers gathered at the Burnsville Performing Arts Center to mourn after her murder and share memories of her life.

A video played during the service showed Schunk delivering the commencement speech at Burnsville High School in 2011.

"We have learned how to make quality friendships, how to help those in need," she said. "Let us not put restrictions on our imaginations. Instead, let's dream without waking and stay forever young."

Those words reminded everyone who gathered of the potential that was lost with her, but her brother told FOX 9 News he hopes her spirit will live on in those who gathered to remember her.

Tyson Schunk, Anarae's brother, admitted each embrace leaves him feeling overwhelmed.

"Personally, I don't know if I've even truly been able to stop and grieve," he said.

The family is still struggling to accept the loss, but they say the support of friends and the community has helped them take their next steps forward.

Schunk's body was recovered near a roadside ditch in Lonsdale, Minn., on Monday. She had been reported missing following a Sept. 22 shooting police say was carried out by her ex-boyfriend, Anthony Lee Nelson (aka Shavelle Oscar Chavez-Nelson), at Nina's Grill.

Nelson was charged with second-degree murder in the deadly shooting of Normandale Community College student Palagor Jobi in the bar's parking lot. He is considered a suspect in Schunk's death, but has not yet been charged.

On Thursday, officials investigating Schunk's death said they believe she was killed in Rosemount; however, police declined to offer any additional information on the location of the crime scene or cause of death, saying the investigation is still ongoing and it may take several weeks before it is ready to be presented to the Dakota County Attorney's Office for charges.

Until then, the Schunk family says they can't have closure.

"Who killed my sister?" Tyson Schunk asked. "We don't know who that is yet, and we don't have formal charges."

MEMORIAL FUND

Donations were collected at the memorial service to help the family offset funeral costs; however, they can still be made at any U.S. Bank branch, care of the Anarae Schunk Fund.

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