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Day of Honoring Hailey Owens Ends With Vigil and March

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- Various events and fundraisers were held across Springfield on Saturday to honor and remember 10-year-old Hailey Owens. She was abducted and killed while walking near her home Tuesday night. The day of remembrance ended with a candlelight vigil near the Jefferson Avenue Footbridge.
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- Various events and fundraisers were held across Springfield on Saturday to honor and remember 10-year-old Hailey Owens. She was abducted and killed while walking near her home Tuesday night.The day of remembrance ended with a candlelight vigil near the Jefferson Avenue Footbridge.

Thousands of people showed up to the march and vigil wearing pink and purple. Many were holding lit candles to honor the little girl. They walked about a quarter of a mile starting at Campbell Ave. and Commercial St. During the march, people sang "Let It Shine," ending with a moment of silence and a singing of "Amazing Grace." Balloons were also released into the sky. People from all across town and hundreds of miles away came to honor and remember a little girl whose life was taken too soon.

This march and vigil marked an end to the day's events honoring Owens, but it all started bright and early this morning.

From donations at the annual chili cook-off and five-dollar all you can eat pancakes at Applebee's, to a fundraiser dinner at Strafford High School,

"I love being a part of being something tthat means so much to so many people," said Tonia Tabor.

From dawn until dusk, a large part of the community has dedicated their entire day to honoring Owens. Money fundraised at many of the events will go directly to the family.

"Good chance to get out and support situation going on," said David Carson, who came out to support the Owens family at Applebee's. "It's good to get out and show support."

Many said the day of events was a way for them to contribute.

"It gave us something to focus on to help, to raise the needed funds for Stacy and the family," said Regina Poissonnet.

Regina Poissonnet and her kids made this a family affair. They worked day and night to prepare the chili for the supper fundraiser.

"Being able to help makes me feel good, but not under these circumstances," she said.

Volunteers and donors, alike, said the day has helped in ways both big and small.

"I think it helps all of us with grieving process," said Donna Mathews, a Springfield teacher. "Even if its small, at least you're participating in to help something."

For others, it's a way to keep Owen's memory alive.

"Hailey. Never met you, but you're a beautiful little girl and I'm so sad," said Donna Matthews.



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