Texas — Texas residents were urged on Monday to support the 7-year-old girl who was discovered dead after being kidnapped last week.
In rural Wise County, Athena Strand—the subject of an AMBER Alert—went missing last week. Her body was found on Friday night.
Tanner Lynn Horner, the suspect, admitted to kidnapping and killing her on Wednesday. Horner is 31 years old. According to the authorities, Horner was delivering a box to Strand’s house while working as a contract FedEx driver at the time of the alleged kidnapping. Officials had requested North Texas people to wear pink in remembrance of the 7-year-old child while the inquiry was ongoing.
Wise County Judge J.D. Clark advised everyone in the county to wear pink on Monday in a statement, citing pink as Strand’s favourite colour.
Clark stated, “My heart is so heavy about Athena. Furthermore, I want everyone to join me on Monday at 6:30 p.m. on the courthouse steps as we pray for Athena, her family, our first responders, and our neighbourhood.
Texas school districts also requested that faculty and staff wear pink.
Districts on the list included:
- Paradise ISD
- Castleberry ISD
- Northwest ISD
- Gunter ISD
- Buena Vista ISD
- Blooming Grove ISD
- Gainesville ISD
- Garner ISD
- Rains Elementary (Rains ISD)
- Bland ISD
- Neches ISD
- Saginaw Elementary (Eagle Mountain-Saginaw ISD)
- Yantis ISD
- Dalhart High School (Dalhart ISD)
- Weatherford ISD
- Krum ISD
- Argyle ISD
- Maypearl ISD
- Lake Worth ISD
Residents Rachalle Taylor and Kayla McConnell brought their kids to the Cottondale First Baptist Church’s memorial service on Monday to honour the young victim. They wore pink clothing as well.
In a little community like this, McConnell remarked, “you never think of anything like this.”
“The suffering [the family is] experiencing is incomparable. But this is how the whole neighbourhood feels. And we’re all with them there. When we ever see pink, we’ll think of Athena and give them our support “McConnell threw in.
The 7-year-school, old’s Comanche Elementary in Oklahoma, also requested that pupils honour the kid by donning pink.
Wise County Sheriff Lane Akin described the case as “one of the worst investigations I’ve ever been engaged with” when he announced that Strand’s body had been discovered on Friday.
“Every time a child passes away, it simply breaks your heart. You make a comparison between that youngster and your own kids when they were that age, “added Akin.
About six miles southeast of Boyd, the body of the 7-year-old was discovered. According to authorities, Horner is the only suspect in the case.
According to Akin, Horner is accused of aggravated kidnapping and capital murder.