Family Members in Hailey's Home React to News of Teen's Death, Say They'll Keep Moving Forward

Published 04/28 2013 10:06PM

Updated 04/28 2013 11:10PM

"I've been crying on and off all day," said a Colorado City local at Friday's vigil. 

The news that Hailey Dunn has been found has shocked the Colorado City community

"The search is over. But this isn't what we wanted," said searcher Holly Jenkins.

"Because we said that she was going to come home," said another searcher at the vigil. "And, we didn't deliver."

But for the family that lives in her home: "It's just been like a rollercoster. It's sad, and it's heartbreaking. But at the same time, we can get closure," said Danny Thurmond. 

They've tried to prepare for the possibility that Hailey could be gone and even tending to the newly planted garden at Hailey's Hope to try to keep that hope growing.

"We've tried everything we can to keep, you know we took the stuffed animals down, we got a garden going. We tried to do everything we could," he said. 

Danny says he and his wife even spent time in that garden upon hearing the news of Hailey's death, saying they felt broken.

"There's really no way you can prepare yourself for something like this. I mean, all we can do is hope for the best, try to stay positive. We all love her. Every one of us loved her to death," said Danny.

And  as they tend to the now growing garden, Danny says they won't let their hope for Hailey fade.

"She's in a better place," he said. "She's not being held against her will. There's bigger plans for her."

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