Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Stockbridge Man Murders Fiance

The day before she was killed, second-grade teacher Kinaya Byrd was asked by her father if she was afraid of her fiance.

"They had had a couple of altercations," Byrd's father, Richard Byrd, told the AJC. "She said, ‘Everything's cool. Nothing's wrong.'"

Police say the fiance, Dana McFarlane, stabbed her to death Friday afternoon during an argument in her Stockbridge home. McFarlane, 35, of Snellville turned himself in and is being held in the Henry County Jail on a murder charge.

"I had a deep feeling he might hurt her someday," Richard Byrd said of his only child, who taught at River's Edge Elementary School in Clayton County. "He was with her all the time and I get worried about people like that who have nothing else going on."

Byrd, 34, graduated from Spelman College and taught nursery school before getting hired at River's Edge two years ago, her father said. She was following in the footsteps of her late mother, Donella Byrd, who was principal at Miles Elementary School in Atlanta. There was no doubt Kinaya would become an educator herself.

"It was always what she wanted to do," Richard Byrd said.

Byrd and McFarlane dated for more than two years and got engaged, but they had not set a wedding date, Byrd's father said.

Richard Byrd said a neighbor heard the quarrel and tried to stop McFarlane.

"He called 911 before she was killed," Richard Byrd said. "By the time the police got there, she was dead."

A "Celebration of Life" service for Kinaya Schenese Byrd will be held at 1 p.m. Friday at St. Paul A.M.E. Church, 1540 Pryor Road Southwest in Atlanta. The wake will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday at Murray Brothers Cascade Chapel, 1199 Utoy Springs Road Southwest in Atlanta.
Our thoughts and prayers are with Kinaya Byrd's family and her students.

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