Photo taken from Florida Missing Children's Day Foundation Facebook page.
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- Missing children from all over the Sunshine state were selected to be
honored at a Missing Children's Day ceremony in the state's
capitol. From the First Coast, Somer Thompson, Bryan Hayes, Mark Degner,
and Haleigh Cummings were recognized.
"Having that day in Tallahassee it is important, but it's also a emotional time for family," said Angie Campbell.
Campbell has hope that one day she'll see her nephew Mark Degner again.
Degner, who would be 21 years old, disappeared from Paxon Middle School with his friend Bryan Hayes in 2005. The two were never seen again. Campbell says Florida's Missing Children's Day ceremony encourages families to keep searching and lets them know the state is behind them.
"You get that renewed sense especially from law enforcement that they're not going to stop," said Campbell.
Degner and Hayes were 12 and 13-years-old. Campbell says every five years she plans on having an age progressed photograph of what her nephew would look like.
"It's hard for even us as family members to remind ourselves that Mark's not 12 he's in his early 20s," Campbell said. "We're not going to find the same person that disappeared from the back of that middle school that day."
According to the FBI's National Information Center at least 2,000 people go missing every day and nearly 85 to 90 percent are children.
The first three hours are the most critical.
A study shows that 76 percent of abducted children who are killed, die within three hours of the abduction. But, cases like the rescue of three women held in captivity in Cleveland after a decade since they went missing, give these families motivation.
"It could be 10 years, it could be 20 years and your loved one can be found," said Campbell.
First Coast News