Stafford memorial: Family says goodbyeSat, June 6, 2009
By PATRICK MALONEY and RANDY RICHMOND, SUN MEDIA
(London Free Press)
WOODSTOCK — Nearly 1,000 friends, family and total strangers gathered yesterday to remember Victoria (Tori) Stafford, the girl whose abduction 59 days ago set on edge a city now united in grief.
Her family held the memorial so the public could celebrate the child most only knew as the girl on the poster, a smiling image that had looked out from nearly every local business window since the nightmare began April 8, when Tori vanished after school.
But the event also gave those loved ones a chance to honour Tori, their “spunky little princess” and “diva with attitude.”
“She was my best friend in the entire world,” her mother, Tara McDonald, told 800 people gathered at Woodstock’s Calvary Church for a community memorial.“I would give my life if just to hear her sweet voice one more time, to hold her in my arms, to smell her hair or smush her nose.”
There is more here.
I have been following this story, since the day Tori disappeared on her way home from school. Hoping for a good outcome. This is not to be. The latest news report reached out and grabbed me for many reasons.
At today's memorial for Tori, her mother quoted some lines that I read over and over to my own child. Still today, these words from a Canadian author, are most surely part of many childrens' bedtime story ritual:
"I'll love you forever, I'll like you for always, as long as I'm living, my baby you'll be". ... (Robert Munsch)
Prayers of peace for Tori, and all who love this precious child.