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Wednesday marks Emma Walker Day, honoring teen killed by ex-boyfriend in 2016

Emma Walker was a student and cheerleader at Central High School. Her 21st birthday would have been this week

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — A grieving family is asking everyone to take a moment on Wednesday to honor a teen killed in 2016.

Emma Walker was shot by Riley Gaul, her ex-boyfriend, as she slept in her North Knox County home. He was convicted of her death and was sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole. 

She was a cheerleader and student at Central High School. Her family describes her as a positive person who always saw the best in people. So, they want to share that same kindness and grace with others.

Emma's 21st birthday would have been this week and to honor her, her family is asking everyone to do something kind for someone else. It can be a small gesture, such as bringing someone their very treat when they arrive home or simply giving a loved one a hug.

It doesn't even need to be for anyone people know personally. But however people show kindness, and to whoever they share it with, they also have one additional request: to wear purple.

Purple was Emma's favorite color, they said, and wearing it would show support for her family and show a commitment to doing kindness for others.

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