2 Wayland families torn apart by death of teen girl
WAYLAND, Mass. -- Two families have been torn apart. The one is dealing with their daughter's murder and the other is dealing with the murder charges against their son.
Distraught parents, Tomo and Beth Fujita of Wayland, left court Tuesday after their 18-year-old son, Nate Fujita, was arraigned for the murder of his ex-girlfriend, Lauren Astley.
An assistant professor at the Berklee College of Music, Tomo Fujita, is a renowned guitarist who’s played at Fenway Park, taught musical stars such as John Mayer and is well known in his native Japan.
“He’s just a nice guy…really knew his stuff and everyone really likes him - it’s too bad,” said Alex Kazenoff, college student.
There is nothing but praise for Tomo Fujita at Berklee, where students are also offering sympathy to his family.
“Everyone was saying the kid was an outstanding student, a wonderful, very respectful kid and he had a long relationship with his girlfriend,” said James Frame, college student. “The teacher…is one of the nicest teachers you’ll ever meet so essentially it’s just super tragic and bizarre that it happened.”
“It’s a horrible thing. I have kids, I feel horrible for both families,” said Michael Tocker, Daddy’s Junky Music.
And at the Natick Collection where Astley worked at the 344 clothing store, coworkers who saw her just hours before she was strangled to death paid tribute to her on the store website, stating:
“Lauren will always be remembered as a vivacious, kindhearted, sweet and talented soul. She touched the lives of everyone she worked with.”
A spokesperson for the Berklee College of Music added that Tomo Fujita is a great guy and well liked by many, many students. He said that the college is thinking about Tomo and his wife, Beth and hopes for the best for both of them.
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