Family remembers 27-year-old mother, shot, killed outside Detroit restaurant

Police are looking for the killer

DETROIT – A dispute at a Coney Island in Detroit ended in gunfire, taking the life of a 27-year-old mother.

Police say the shooting happened around 3:30 a.m. Saturday outside Hollywood Coney Island on Grand River Avenue.

Family has identified the victim as Donae Wilbert.

Wilbert had been out with friends in Detroit and stopped at Coney Island to eat.

There was a dispute between customers, and the family says Wilbert tried to walk away from the conflict.

“She went to her car, and my understanding is she was shot when she was outside of her car,” said Wilbert’s mother, Ladonna Kemp.

Wilbert died shortly after.

“When we identified and viewed her body, my daughter still had a smile on her face, and she looked very peaceful,” Kemp said.

The Kemp’s said their daughter was always dancing and smiling and could bring levity to any situation.

“If the person who did this to her would’ve known her for about 10 minutes, he would have never harmed her,” Kemp said.

As police look for the killer, Wilbert’s family struggles to come to terms with this senseless act of gun violence.

“I really want people to understand that she was a person, not a statistic,” said Wilbert’s father, Charles Kemp. “She was a mother, a friend, an aunt, a cousin.”

The community is asked to provide any additional information that can assist investigators.

If anyone has information regarding this incident, they’re asked to call 313-596-2260 or 1-800-SPEAK-UP.

All tips to Crime Stoppers are anonymous. Click here to submit a tip online.

About the Author:

Jacqueline Francis is an award-winning journalist who joined the WDIV team in September 2022. Prior to Local 4, she reported for the NBC affiliate in West Michigan. When she’s not on the job, Jacqueline enjoys taking advantage of all the wonders Michigan has to offer, from ski trips up north to beach days with her dog, Ace.