Friends remember 'kind, caring' clerk who was murdered
As Kelso police look for the suspect who shot and killed Kayla Chapman during an armed robbery Tuesday morning, her friends are left mourning the loss of someone who they say seemingly helped everyone she came in contact with.
"She loved people, she would help people," said longtime friend Desiree Zimmerman. "She always reminded me if there's ever anything that we need in between paying bills, food, and stuff, that she was always available to help."
"She has the biggest heart in the world," said friend Heather Clark. "She was an amazing and beautiful person."
Customers say Chapman had worked at Holt's Quik Chek Market for about five years, during that time she'd routinely help homeless people in the area.
"She would give them the leftover hot food," Zimmerman said. "She helped everybody and cared about everybody."
"She was one of the nicest people I've ever met," said Will Rollet, a regular customer of the convenience store. "She always made sure the homeless had coffee or something to eat."
Friends laid down flowers Tuesday afternoon. Crime tape surrounded the gas station where she was killed. Chapman's friends watched the investigation from the sidelines, heartbroken over the loss.
"It's baffling that someone can be so heartless and take someone at their work," said Justin Madson. "This world is falling apart and good people like that are hard to come by. It's too bad the world lost one today."
Investigators believe the suspect is a black or dark-skinned man. He was wearing a hat and bandana to cover his head and face.
The suspect vehicle is described as a newer white, four-door sedan. Police believe there were other occupants in the vehicle at the time of the crime.