Two communities host prayer vigil

Posted 10/11/12

“Amazing Grace” echoed throughout Kensington Park Tuesday night as hundreds of people gathered to pray for Jessica Ridgeway’s safe return to …

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Two communities host prayer vigil


“Amazing Grace” echoed throughout Kensington Park Tuesday night as hundreds of people gathered to pray for Jessica Ridgeway’s safe return to her Westminster home.

The 10-year-old was last seen by her mother Sarah Ridgeway on Oct. 5 as she was walking to school. Ridgeway never made it to school, and has been missing ever since.

As hundreds of police officers worked around the clock to find Ridgeway, two communities came together with one purpose — to pray for her return. One prayer vigil was at Kensington Park northwest of W. 100th Avenue and Wadsworth Parkway in Westminster and the other was at Community Park in Superior. People were asked to wear the color purple, Ridgeway’s favorite color, and to bring a flashlight. The Westminster vigil was lead by Scott Applegate, pastor at Novation Church in Westminster.

“Thank you all so much for being here. This is the power of community,” he said. “We gather here to give hope and prayer and belief that Jessica will return safely to her family.”

Applegate asked the community to raise their flashlights to the sky and said, “If one flashlight is raised above, it’s a small light, but if we all hold them up together, it is one big light heading upwards.”

Mike Magdaldno, owner of The Conference Experience, provided the lights and music for the vigil. His daughter is Jessica’s classmate.

“I always want to give back to the community,” he said. “Nobody asked us to do this, we just did it.”

As the evening continued, Westminster Mayor Nancy McNally, praised the crowd for their support of the Ridgeway family. She said was proud the number of people who volunteered their time to search for Ridgeway with less than 24 hours notice.

“You rock. That’s all I can say,” she said. “I ask you all to remember to talk to one another and pray for Jessica’s return. The Ridgeway family is not alone.”

Westminster Police Chief Lee Birk also expressed his gratitude, and said hundreds of police officers from various departments are working hard to bring Ridgeway back.

“We are doing everything humanly possible to bring her home,” he said. “We deeply care about Jessica as if it was our own child, we nothing more seriously than the safety of a child. Please continue to pray for the police departments to help us find leads that lead our investigation.”

Thornton resident Shannon Dill was at the Westminster prayer vigil with her two sons, a 12-year-old and a 9-year-old. She said normally the boys walk to the bus top, but after the Jessica’s disappearance, she walks them to and from the bus stop. She said she felt some comfort at the vigil.

“It breaks my heart that anyone could ever take a child like this,” she said. “But being here and knowing we have such a great community here for Jessica.”

Anyone who has information about the Ridgeway case can contact the Westminster Police Department at 303-658-4336 or e-mail Flyers with Ridgeway’s picture can also be picked up at the Westminster Public Safety Center, 9110 Yates St.


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