Almost five years ago, in 2017, five teenagers lost their lives when the car they were traveling in lost control, spun out off the road, and into a tree before bursting into flames. This rattled all of Kalamazoo whether you were friends, family, or classmates with the victims or didn't know them at all but thought of it being someone you did know. Kalamazoo hasn't forgotten this day and as their souls rest, loved ones are finding ways for their legacies to continue.

The Alma Powell Library branch of the Kalamazoo Public Library, which is located in the Douglas Community Association, has joined the effort and has honored Deztanee Cobb, a lifelong member that spent much of her time there. Many family members, friends, librarians, and many more can recall Deztanee, who was often called Deza, cuddling up with a book. She loved to read Urban fiction and valued historical figures and information such as Harriet Tubman.

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Introducing Deza's Corner

In the later months of the year, the Alma Powell branch started a project unbeknownst to most of the community. They weren't expanding or taking anything away, they were simply changing a small portion to remember someone that brought so much life and positivity, not only to the library but to life itself. They turned one of the corners of their library into a space for teenagers to read and learn. This space is now known as Deza's Corner and even has some of her favorite books, which were hand-picked by her mother.

While some leave behind a trail of evidence that shows they didn't live the example life that most try to, others live the life that many look up to and try to emulate. Deza was one of those people that lived an amazing life and many young girls looked up to and wanted to be like her when they grew up. Everyone wishes to leave behind a stellar legacy, but most don't get that opportunity, but Deza did just that in Kalamazoo. If you're visiting the Alma Powell Library branch, enjoy some time in Deza's Corner reading some of her favorite literature in one of her favorite places.

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