Community remembers Elizabeth and Lyric on first anniversary

2013-07-13T17:30:00Z 2014-12-04T18:10:06Z Community remembers Elizabeth and Lyric on first anniversaryBy LINH TA, linh.ta@wcfcourier.com Waterloo Cedar Falls Courier
July 13, 2013 5:30 pm  • 

EVANSDALE, Iowa — Clouds hung over Lofty’s Lounge Saturday morning and the roar of motorcycles thundered during a memorial ride and drive for Lyric Cook-Morrissey, 10, and Elizabeth Collins, 8.

Hundreds of community members in purple and pink garb gathered to mark the first anniversary of the cousins’ disappearance on July 13. The girls’ bodies were later discovered at Seven Bridges Wildlife Area in Bremer County.

“It’s been a hard year,” said Drew Collins, Elizabeth’s father. “We’re just ready for answers and ready to change some laws and get things moving in the right direction.”

When Collins woke up this morning, he said he couldn’t believe a year had passed since Elizabeth and Lyric went missing. He appreciates the outpouring of support from the community he received at the ride.

“It’s just amazing. Through tragedy, some of these people who’ve carried us, I didn’t know them a year ago,” Collins said. “No one’s forgot about why we’re doing this.”

In Lofty’s Lounge, motorcycle and car drivers prepared for a 125-mile trek around Northeast Iowa, tying bandanas around their heads and purple ribbons to their arms. A meal was provided for everyone who helped find the girls and people bought raffle tickets. Proceeds going toward Cedar Valley Crime Stoppers and to Angels Park, a feature added in Evansdale since the girls’ disappearance.

Before the ride and drive, Heather Collins spoke to the crowd about her daughter.

“Everyone always asks me how many children you have. I didn’t realize how hard that question was until we lost Elizabeth,” Collins said. “God blessed us with four children, and even though we lost one, we will never forget her.”

Chris Webb of Waterloo, a motorcycle enthusiast, organized the event to bring awareness to the tragedy.

“Bikers get a bad reputation, but they have the softest heart,” Webb said.

Alicia Kozakiewicz of Chicago attended the event. She was a victim lured on the Internet in 2002 when she was 13 years old. She reminded the crowd the importance of vigilance against predators who prey on children.

“I’m here as a message of hope,” Kozakiewicz said. “Citizens need to come forward. They need to realize that this can happen to them.”

Though the year was difficult, Drew and Heather Collins said they appreciated the community.

“It’s amazing. They have rallied behind us, brought us dinner, they pretty much have carried us through this,” Drew Collins said.

Copyright 2015 Waterloo Cedar Falls Courier. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

(1) Comments

  1. KCinTXfromMN
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    KCinTXfromMN - July 13, 2013 7:33 pm
    Thank you WCF Courier for this wonderful news story with awesome photos. Thank you also for honoring Elizabeth & Lyric and keeping the community abreast of events in their memory. Together we can help the families during this difficult time and hopefully bring those responsible to justice. What an awesome showing of support and a fine community!
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Help

Tip line

Authorities are asking anyone who saw the girls to call the Tip Line, (319) 232-6682 or e-mail to OURMISSINGIOWAGIRLS@dps.state.ia.us. The tipline is manned 24 hours.

A reward of $150,000 has been established for information that leads to an arrest and conviction.

Other tip lines:

- Crime Stoppers Hotline at (855) 300-8477
- FBI tipline at (402) 493-8688
- DCI tipline at (515) 725-6010


Donations

For information on donations, contact the First Security Bank in Evansdale at (319) 235-6731.

The Cedar Valley Crime Stoppers has also set up a separate reward for information leading to an arrest. All donations collected between Nov. 19 and Dec. 19 will go toward this reward.

Donations can be left at the Evansdale Police Department, Cedar Falls Police Department, Waterloo Police Department and the Black Hawk County Sheriff's Office. Donations can also be mailed to Crime Stoppers- Elizabeth and Lyric, PO Box 1510, Waterloo, IA 50704.


Poster


Photos

Photos: The hunt for Elizabeth and Lyric (part 2)

Photos: The hunt for Elizabeth and Lyric (part 2)

Photos of the 5-month search for missing cousins Elizabeth Collins, 8, and Lyric Cook-Morrissey, 10, who were found dead in December.

July 11, 2015 4:00 pm Photos

Photos

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Photos: Missing cousins gallery

Photos: Missing cousins gallery

July 12, 2015 6:30 am Photos

Photos

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