As Kassig is hailed as a hero in Syria, family hopes Indiana will reach out

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (Nov. 17, 2014) -- In the wake of a young Hoosier's killing by terrorists, his family and friends hope you'll be a part of his legacy.

Abdul-Rahman Kassig, formerly known as Peter, was confirmed dead over the weekend. Kassig became the latest victim of the terrorist group ISIS following his capture more than a year ago in Syria.

"Good will prevail, as the one God of many names will prevail," his mother Paula Kassig said.

It was those words, spoken by Kassig's mother Monday, that many hold above all others as they come to grips with Kassig's death.

One of them is Kenan Rahmani, a Syrian-American who grew up in Indianapolis and was aiding in Syria at the same time as Kassig.

"He is being considered a martyr," Rahmani said.

Kassig, who converted to Islam and dedicated his life to helping the people of Syria, could mark a turning point in Rahmani's eyes.

"Seeing (him), who was just an American who really wanted to do good and he converted to Islam and despite all of that, ISIS still killed him ... now people really are protesting even harder against ISIS," Rahmani said.

Back at home, pastor and family friend Pat Engel had already seen how Kassig's capture had brought together Christians and Muslims in central Indiana.

"I said to his mother, 'Abdul went to Syria to make a difference there, but he's also making a difference here,'" Engel said.

Engel and the Kassig family hoped that if you are touched by his story, you'll take time to make a difference in his honor, in whatever way you choose.

They're also asking that donations, instead of condolences or flowers, be made to the Syrian American Medical Society. You'll find more information about that group and how to donate at the link here.

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