RENO, NV - By all accounts Mufasa Ousley was a young man with a bright future, a good son and student, someone who not only worried about others, but sought to make a difference.
"He had that demeanor," says his mother Estorica. "If anybody's in trouble he's there even if it had nothing to do with him. He's there."
He was known his mother and father say to bring home other kids needing a place to stay for a night.
"I said people are going to think I'm crazy. I've got six kids of my own and a lot of others staying with me."
"He had a big heart, a very big heart<" says his father Donald Clay. "So if there's something he could do for someone, he's going to make it happen."
This past Thanksgiving he suddenly got the idea of helping to feed the homeless.
"He wanted me to get in the kitchen and cook and I cooked," says his mother.
The family took the food down to Fourth Street.
"And he passed out plates with his brothers. That was his dream."
In September he suddenly collapsed at school. His heart stopped, but he was revived. Tests indicated an inflamation of his heart, but after a long stay in the hospital he was released, taken off medication.
His mother says he was given a clean bill of health on his last doctor's visit. He was living a normal teenager's life with no restrictions.
Then Monday a week ago, excited about his birthday, as any 16 year old would be looking forward to studying for his driver's license. He walked to a friend's house. His mother got a call. He had collapsed.
"We got to the hospital. They were still working on him in the ambulance. The nurse came out and told us we could come in to see him and it was like 'OK I was thinking they got him like the first time. Then I saw his arm fall off the side of the bed. That's when they told us there was nothing they could do for him anymore."
His mother and father say come next Thanksgiving, they'll cook for the homeless once again, following a path their son set for them.
This Saturday services will be held for Mufasa Ousley at O"Brien, Rogers and Crosby Funeral Home on West Second Street. Viewing begins at 3 p.m. Services start at 4 p.m.
An account at Bank of America has been set up to help the family with expenses. You'll find details on this website under Hot Topics and KOLO Cares.