Hundreds gather at vigil for slain MTSU basketball player - WKRN News 2

Hundreds gather at vigil for slain MTSU basketball player

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Tina Stewart was stabbed to death in her Murfreesboro apartment on Wednesday. Tina Stewart was stabbed to death in her Murfreesboro apartment on Wednesday.

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. – Hundreds of mourners gathered in the Murphy Center at Middle Tennessee State University in Murfreesboro Thursday night for a candlelight vigil in Tina Stewart's honor.

The junior exercise science major was stabbed to death inside her apartment at Raiders Crossing Apartments Wednesday night.

Her roommate, Shanterrica Madden has been charged with first-degree murder in connection to Stewart's death. The 18-year-old is a freshman at MTSU.

"Tina Stewart, your family loves you, your family misses you and your family will not forget you," MTSU President Dr. Sidney McPhee said at the vigil.

He continued, "I want you to pray for Tina's family and pray for these young women who are her teammates."

Stewart was set to play with the Lady Blue Raiders in the Sun Belt Conference Basketball tournament this weekend.

Late Thursday, the team decided unanimously to play in the tournament in honor of Stewart.

"Tina would want us to play for her that's why we made that decision," MTSU player Anne Marie Lanning said, adding, "We are going to go out there and do our best."

The hour long program included music played by the MTSU Brass Quintet, a video tribute with pictures of Stewart and a candle lighting ceremony.

Stewart's boyfriend K.C. Anuna also spoke to the crowd.

"She didn't like me [at first], but I grew on her and I always told her I am going to get you," he said. "August of our freshman year, I snatched her up and I got her and I never let her go."

Anuna was with Stewart Wednesday shortly before she was killed.

"It is a tragedy what happened [Wednesday] night, what I had to see," he said.  "If Tina was here right now she would want them to play in the tournament. For the last few weeks that's all she was talking about."

Stewart's basketball coach fought back tears while talking to the crowd. He asked everyone to support the team and Stewart's family.

"I want you to pray for Tina's family and pray for these young women who are her teammates," Coach Rick Insell said.

At the end of the vigil the brass quintet played the Tennessee Waltz, which is traditionally played at the end of every home game.

As they did, the crowd held lit candles.

"While she was with us she certainly gave us a beautiful dance," Director of Broadcasting Chip Walters said.

Funeral arrangements for Stewart are pending.

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