Music helped bring people together Saturday night to raise money to build a lasting memorial to two cousins who were kidnapped and killed last year - as well as other young victims of violence.
Lyric Cook and Elizabeth Collins were last seen riding their bikes near Meyers Lake in Evansdale in July. Their bodies were found in a Bremer County park in December.
Saturday, a fundraising concert was underway to redevelop the park around Meyers Lake in honor of the two girls and other young murder victims from the area as well. For more than a month, crews have been working to revamp the island in Meyers Lake. It's been renamed Angels Park, and trail around the lake, Trail of Angels.
All of the money for the construction has come through donations and fundraisers, like the concert. It was a joyous atmosphere, a large crowd at the Concert for the Angels, supporting the families of Lyric Cook and Elizabeth Collins.
"It doesn't stop," said HEather Collins, Elizabeth's parents. "People continue to support us and our family."
This concert will help fund Angels Park which has been dedicated to the cousins and the many other families who've lost someone to violence.
"Right now a lot of people consider that a dark, dark place," said Heather. "So just for it to be lightened up and just to make that park in honor of all of the kids that have been, lost their lives."
The concert was also a chance for the Collins family to thank all the people who helped looked for Lyric and Elizabeth.
"Part of this is giving thanks to all the volunteers that searched for our daughter and our niece," said Drew Collins, Elizabeth's father.
That included Heroes Row, a line of first responder vehicles dedicated to the first responders who spent hours trying to find the girls.
"It was dedicated to all the men and the women that spent countless hours searching for Lyric and Elizabeth and doing the job that a lot of other people just can't do," said Pete Miles, Event Co-Coordinator.
People from throughout the area helped put this concert together, from booking in the bands to selling t-shirts or bracelets.
"Once the memorial got announced, we needed to do something to raise money to get that memorial built," said Miles.
And families came whether they knew the girls or were just touched by their story.
"I have family, too, and I don't want any of my children to come up missing," said Clayton Bowles, friend of the Collins family. "That's the main goal right there, to keep our kids safe."
"It could have been my daughter," said Emy Widdel, of Elk Run Heights.
There was also an insurance group handing out fingerprint kits to parents. The kit is the first step in the amber alert process. Farmers Insurance hopes that by giving parents these kits they'll be able to prevent other tragedies.
The Collins family will hold a public burial for Elizabeth on May 4, 2013. A private ceremony has already been held for Lyric Cook.
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