|The 21-year-old Hollins University student was killed by a drunk driver|
Monday, April 23, 2012
By KEN BRADLEY - Staff Writer
Shalynda M. Toney, whose parents live in Franklin County, was killed on her 21st birthday by a drunk driver, but her memory and her contributions to youth were celebrated with a special concert at Hollins University last weekend.
Toney is the daughter of Frank Jr. and Angela Toney. Frank Toney Jr. is the pastor of Inner Faith Ministries on U.S. 220, just north of Rocky Mount.
Shalynda was 21 and a senior at Hollins University, just months away from graduating with a degree in international business, when she was killed in October 2009 by a drunk driver in Rome, Italy, where she was studying abroad.
Angela Toney said her daughter founded an inner faith ministry youth group. "Shalynda had many friends in Franklin County through her youth group work," she said.
More than 450 people attended the concert Friday afternoon in the college's DuPont Chapel. Although there was no admission charge, donations were accepted that will go into a scholarship fund to benefit Hollins students in their pursuit of collegiate academic excellence.
About $2,200 was raised at the concert, according to Laura Miller, who works at the university's chapel.
The concert, called "Gospel Fest," featured William McDowell, a national gospel recording artist. McDowell has topped the gospel charts with gospel songs like "I Won't Go Back" and "I Give Myself Away." He was Shalynda's favorite recording artist.
"The ministry of Shalynda will forever live through the lives she has touched and will forever touch with her ministry to youth," said Angela Toney.