Family shares memories of young woman found dead at Nunaka Valley baseball fields

Updated: Jun. 11, 2021 at 8:58 PM AKDT
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - Katelynn Shelhamer had a gift of making people feel better, but now her family and friends have to focus on memories of the young woman who was found dead at the Nunaka Valley baseball fields earlier this week.

“Her smile is something that I don’t think anybody who ever met her will ever forget,” said Crissy Musick, Shelhamer’s aunt.

Anchorage police found Shelhamer’s body at the Nunaka Valley baseball fields early Tuesday morning. Police said Shelhamer suffered trauma to her upper body, with her death being considered a homicide.

“All the family is distraught,” Musick said. “Katelynn was just this light that shined so bright no matter which situation she was in, no matter where she was at. She just loved everybody.”

The last couple of years had been a bit difficult for Shelhamer. But Musick said her niece appeared to be looking for a brighter future for herself. She expressed interest in a career in cosmetology or hair styling.

“One of her passions was braiding,” Musick said. “And although I’m not as good as her, I am wearing the braids today for her.”

Shelhamer turned 18 this past April. Her family wants to know why someone took her life — and at such a young age.

“Unfortunately, we don’t know all the answers with Katelynn,” Musick said. “And until we get those answers, justice is not received.”

Shelhamer’s family and friends will gather at the baseball fields on June 19 for a 6 p.m. memorial service. They will release balloons in her memory.

Police have asked anyone with information about Shelhamer’s death to call 311 or Crime Stoppers.

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