Seminole Heights church offers to hold funeral for third murder victim

One Seminole Heights church is offering to hold the funeral for one of the area's three murder victims while one man is making ribbons in honor of the victims.

TAMPA, Fla. – When hearing that the family of Anthony Naiboa, the third person killed in a string of murders in Seminole Heights, didn’t have enough funds for a funeral and burial, Brian Frey jumped into action.

Frey, president of the Hampton Terrace Community Association, immediately got on the phone and placed a call to a good friend.

“I just called him and said ‘this is what’s happening, this is what’s needed’ and it was just a very quick ‘OK, we’ll do it,’” Frey said.

That quick call was to Pastor Matt Horan of Seminole Heights United Methodist Church.

“We know that the family needs help,” Frey said. “There’s not a lot of thought process that goes into it, you just do it. That’s how our neighborhood is, you just do it.”

Naiboa’s funeral will be held Saturday evening at Horan’s church on Central Ave.

But the generosity didn’t end there.

Frey, a real estate agent, said he was floored when a neighbor attending a recent open house offered up a personal grave site for the 20-year-old victim.

“It’s hard to describe what someone things in a moment like that because it’s not everyday that those things just come to you,” he said. “It blows me away every time because you think that a level of humanity can’t get greater and then it does.”

Frey is also making white ribbons that have the first letter of each of the victims - Benjamin Mitchell, Monica Hoffa and Naiboa - and is encouraging others to do the same. The ribbons will be worn and tied to trees.

TIMELINE: 3 murders in Tampa neighborhood, killer at large

“It’s important because it shows our resilience but it also shows we’re unified and that these three people are in our hearts and in our minds,” Frey said.

“These families need to know that this community supports them because they’re part of who we are now.” 

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