McAlester News-Capital, McAlester, OK


June 21, 2012

OU dancer receives first Juli Busken scholarship

NORMAN, Okla. — A dancer at the University of Oklahoma has received a scholarship in honor of a student-ballerina who was kidnapped and murdered in 1996 shortly after completing her senior year.

Cleveland County Sheriff Joe Lester presented the scholarship this week to Billie Jean Kandravi, a ballerina in the university’s School of Dance. The scholarship is named in honor of Juli Busken of Benton, Ark.

Busken was kidnapped from her Norman apartment Dec. 20, 1996. She was found shot to death hours later at Lake Stanley Draper. Anthony Castillo Sanchez was convicted in 2006 in her death and remains on Oklahoma’s death row.

The sheriff says $30,000 has been raised for the scholarship fund. He says family and friends hope to raise a total of $500,000 for the scholarship.

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