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Father and daughter build life vest rack in honor of Malik Williams

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Visitors to the Mississippi River will see a new fixture at Ben Butterworth Parkway: a rack of life vests.

The installation was put up on Saturday, June 10th by a father and daughter who were feeling sympathy for the life and family of Malik Williams, the 25-year-old man who drowned attempting to save his son.

As rescue crews were recovering Malik Williams' body from the river, University of Iowa student Olivia Ray was running by.

Having heard of the search in the news, Ray said she didn't expect that the crews would find anything, but on her way back she witnessed some of the recovery.

"It's just another one of those stories," Ray said. "I always get upset when I hear of someone drowning in the Mississippi."

Wanting to help prevent drownings from happening anymore, Ray said she and her father spent time during the weekend building a post to hold life vests for public use. The post holds two adult life vests, two children's life vests and a life preserver.

She wrote messages on the life vest rack, encouraging people to use them, and return them, "In remembrance of Malik."

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