Families of Missing Girls Meet to Raise Awareness - WSET.com - ABC13

Families of Missing Girls Meet to Raise Awareness

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Lynchburg, VA-  A crowd came out to Miller Park in Lynchburg Saturday to raise awareness for missing girls in the area. The event was hosted by B.B. Shavers's SHOPO organization.

In light of Jamisha Gilbert's death, many families who have also lost daughters gathered for a common goal, to help save the next girl.

"When people are picked off and murdered, it's a loss for all of us, and it's a loss no one gets over," said Dan Harrington, whose daughter Morgan was murdered.

Dan Harrington says that since 2009, 15 girls have gone missing along the 29 corridor. The families now come together to raise awareness about their daughters and others like them.

"Together we advertised this to bring people together to say we're not gonna take this anymore and the communities need to do something to help protect our young women," said Harrington.

Many of the families told their story and offered support to each other. Heather Hodges went missing last year in Franklin County. She is the mother of a three-year-old daughter. Nothing has been discovered about her, and the search is ongoing.

 "It's a sad reason to be here, but it's amazing to see everyone come together. This is something we have begged for in our community. Something we have prayed for ourselves and to see everyone stand here united, it's amazing," said Wendy Nichols, a friend of Heather Hodges.

Cassandra Morton went missing around the same time as Morgan Harrington, and she left behind two daughters. She was found dead on Candlers Mountain four years ago.

The family is desperate for closure and wants to know any information about their daughter's death.

"I don't know if it's a cold case of what it is, but we haven't heard nothing in about a year. Not anything at all. Every time we call the private investigator, he tells us the same story over and over again," said Cassandra's Morton's parents.

The main concern for all of these families touched by tragedy is to get the word out so this doesn't happen again.

"We care, we're concerned, and we want to do anything we can to help," said Lynchburg City Councilman H. Cary.                     

Many of the families expressed how important meetings like this are. They say it gives them strength and encouragement to go on with life. They also ask for anyone who knows anything about these missing girls to go straight to police.

If you would like more information on Help Save the Next Girl you can visit their website here.

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