By: Katie Jones, firstname.lastname@example.org
Tears upon tears have been shed in a small Iowa town, as folks mourn the tragic deaths of two cousins.
It wasn't the way the community of Evansdale hoped for, but Thursday night exactly five months after Elizabeth Collins disappeared...she was finally welcomed home.
She didn't actually see her,
"We had planned on having a big huge party for her when she came home," Heather Collins said.
But Heather Collins said she knows her daughter Elizabeth was the belle of her ball.
"Her presence will be here, and she will be looking down on us smiling and dancing along with us and singing," Heather Collins said.
Elizabeth and her cousin Lyric were last seen 5 months ago riding their bikes in Evansdale.
After a nation-wide search effort, hunters found their bodies last week 25 miles north of where the girls disappeared.
"We don't want to know how they were hurt. We don't need to know that we just know they're gone," she said.
Gone but never forgotten the Collins' family now plans to work with Iowa lawmakers to bring justice for Elizabeth and Lyric.
"If someone murders a child they need to be punished severely so we'll be going to Des Moines on Monday to meet with Governor Branstad to start the process on that, start to get things changed," she said.
Authorities are investigating the girls' deaths as a homicide, but no arrests have been made.
Meanwhile, Lyric's family said her service will be scheduled after Christmas or early next year.