Though the missing teen is presumed dead, the community in Morgan Hill held a special service for Sierra LaMar on Wednesday night, hoping for her return. U.S. Rep. Zoe Lofgren was just one high-profile person to attend. George Kiriyama reports.
The words "give up" and "quit" are not in their vocabulary.
For almost six months, the family and friends of missing Morgan Hill teenager Sierra Lamar have dedicated their lives to finding her.
On Wednesday night, in front of the Morgan Hill library, they sent a clear message: Our job is not done. We will find Sierra and we will bring her home to her family.
They then used paper bags with LED candles inside of them and spelled out the word "Hope" on the lawn. They wanted to "light the night" and "show the way" for Sierra.
"There are days as it gets longer and longer, sometimes I question about her recovery," Marlene Lamar, Sierra's mother, said. "And then these people do things like that and it helps lift us up and raise my hopes as well."
Sierra Lamar has been missing since March 16 when investigators say she was kidnapped while on her way to school.
Boosting her family's spirits was San Jose congresswoman Zoe Lofgren who stopped by the volunteer center on Wednesday to offer her support.
During her visit, she promised to push state lawmakers to put a new law on the books - a law many say could have made the difference in this case.
"When a child doesn't show up at school you know notify the parents right away rather than the end of the school day whether a child has been abducted or is merely playing hooky," Lofgren said. "It's something the parents should know right away."
Lamar's parents support Lofgren's proposal.
"No parent should have to go through that length of time to wait and it shouldn't take something like this to get it going, but sometimes things like this happen," Marlene Lamar said.
Santa Clara County Sheriff Laurie Smith said the search for LaMar will continue.
"We want to keep this alive," Smith said. "So we can continue to search and continue to get more information. We want the public to tell us more."
The suspect in this case, Antolin Garcia Torres, will appear in court later this month. He has yet to enter a plea to the murder and kidnapping charges he faces.