ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- Five weeks have passed since the tragic murder of 23-year old Brandon Wright. a loss that's still shocking those who knew him...including his best friend, Byron Emerson.
"We're all here. We're here for him. But we're still expecting him to walk in. It hasn't set in yet that he's gone, it's just unreal. I still can't believe it”, says Emerson
Emerson joined several others at Casey’s Pub in Loves Park this afternoon for a benefit to raise awareness of violence in the Rockford community...and start a scholarship fund in wright's name. All while celebrating a life that was suddenly taken...
Wright’s friend Lacey Hessian says, "[Wright] made friends and he kept them. He didn't have enemies; he didn't have any conflict following him. He was a good student, a good friend, a good worker; he just always had a smile on his face."
Casey's Pub wasn't the only place celebrating the life of the Jefferson High graduate. His Alma Mater played host to the "Playing for Peace" benefit that also aimed to end violence in the Stateline. The idea came from one of Wright's friends who says after last month's murder, he knew something had to be done.
"My main focus was after hearing the news about him, it made me think about all victims. So truly, my focus went on everybody. All victims, all families, anybody affected by violence in Rockford”, says Eric Hominick.
22-year old Luis Anaya remains at large for Wright's murder on November 12. Family and friends say they know it's just a matter of time until justice is served and the case comes to a close.