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Columbus father raises money for teddy bears 1 year after son's death

Bryce Persang died in 2021 after he was found not breathing in a car in Columbus.

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Friday marked one year since a family has been without their son, brother and friend. One year ago, Bryce Persang, 24, was found shot in the front seat of a car in Columbus.

“He was sarcastic, he was obnoxious, he was kind of a jerk, but he was fun, he can make you laugh,” said Steven Persang, Bryce’s father.

 Bryce Persang was found not breathing inside of a Honda Fit after he was shot. He was taken to a hospital where he was later pronounced dead.

“It was kind of surreal and I don't even know if a year later I've come to terms with it,” Persang said.

Columbus police said 20-year-old Tahir Said and 19-year-old Hanut Abdulle are suspects in the shooting. Both have been charged with murder and have warrants for their arrests.

This case is technically considered solved, as Columbus police say they've identified the people responsible. The lead detective on this case says the suspects have not been apprehended, as shortly after the homicide they left the country. Last she heard they were in Somalia.

“It's like walking through a very dark tunnel with absolutely no light,” Persang said.

In Bryce’s honor, Persang said he’s raising money for teddy bears. Each bear goes to a child in need.

“A quick way to do it is with these bears and put on the birth certificates there from Bryce…and I'm hoping it just keeps going,” Persang said.

Last year, the bears went to the Ronald McDonald House. Persang isn't sure where they're going this year, but wherever they go, a piece of Bryce is going with them.

If you would like to help buy teddy bears in honor of Bryce, you can donate to their GoFundMe.

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