EAST LANSING, Mich. (WILX) -- Devastated by the unexpected loss of one of their best friends, a group of MSU students decided to honor him by creating a non-profit organization dedicated to helping children.
Abhi Shah, a fiance major at MSU, was only 20-years-old when he unexpectedly passed away from health complications. He was known by many for having a very bubbly and caring personality.
"Abhi was the goofiest guy I ever met..he always had a smile on his face..he was always cracking jokes..he was just someone you always wanted to be around", said Brandon Halmaghi, President of Smile 4 Kids MSU.
"In a way Abhi looked after all of us..and for us..to lose such a pillar in our lives..It's devastating", said Veer Shah,Vice President of Smile 4 Kids MSU.
Devastated by the news of losing their best friend, Abhi's friends decided to create Smile 4 Kids Msu, a foundation on campus dedicated to helping children in need to honor their friends legacy.
"I think that source of pain is what brought us back into reality and pulled us out of the trenches..And said lets move forward but lets do it right", said Shah.
Since starting the club in September, Smile 4 Kids has over 100 members. Plans of expanding to other universities are already in the works.
Members participate in tutoring services, outreach events, and plans on bringing gift baskets to the pediatric center this month. The club has recently partnered with St. Vincent Catholic charities and Sparrow Hospital.
Abhi's friends say the success of the club is more than they could have imagined and hopes Abhi's legacy continues to be a light in others lives.
"This is bigger than just a coping method..this is bigger than us doing something in his name..kids..other kids that knew him even if for a couple months.. want to do something in his name" , said Shah.
On November 23rd, with the help of the Abhi Shah Foundation created by Abhi's Parents, the club will be opening a brand new foster home here in Lansing to honor their late friend.
For more information about Smile 4 Kids MSU or volunteer opportunities, please visit https://smile4kidsmsu.weebly.com/