March 16th marked four years since the disappearance of Morgan Hill teenager Sierra LaMar.
On Wednesday, her family, friends, and volunteers who searched for her joined together for a dinner at El Patio Restaurant in Fremont. Her mother, Marlene LaMar, said it was one of Sierra’s favorite places to eat.
About 25 people spent the night sharing stories about Sierra and their efforts to find her.
“It’s nice just knowing that she is not forgotten. It's not something you forget when something like this happens,” Marlene LaMar said.
Sierra LaMar was 15, on her way to school in Morgan Hill when she disappeared in 2012. Police presume LaMar to be dead.
Antolin Garcia-Torres was indicted by a grand jury for Sierra Lamar's death. His capital murder trial is scheduled to begin next month.
Since Sierra LaMar disappeared, hundreds of volunteers have done more than 1,150 searches for her.
Search Coordinator Roger Nelson said volunteers have spent about 55,000 hours searching for Sierra LaMar throughout the Bay Area. Family, friends and volunteers will hold one more search starting 9:15 a.m. Saturday off Eastman Canyon Road in Morgan Hill.
"To bring Sierra home to her family and if that brings some measure of closure then that's fantastic,” Nelson said. “If it helps bring justice for Sierra, then so much the better."
Sierra LaMar would be in college now. Her childhood friends sat together Wednesday night and said they lean on each other for support.
“We still manage to know how each other are doing through the whole situation and everything that's going on,” friend Channah Foreman said.
Steve Lamar, Sierra’s father, said the annual dinner is therapeutic, though his heart continues to break.
“We’re always having hope," he said. "I'm still hoping she's alive somewhere."