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Colorado Missing Persons Day marks fifth year of raising awareness and providing support

More than 500 names of missing people read in state Capitol
Posted at 5:39 PM, Feb 04, 2020

DENVER -- Family members and friends gathered inside the Colorado Senate chamber, holding pictures of their missing loved ones. Colorado Missing Persons Day marked its fifth year but this year, organizer Laura Saxton noticed a lot of new faces.

"So to be around other people who totally know what it feels like and can understand, that brings some comfort to me, even though it’s a sad club to be a part of, I still think there is some sort of comfort and peace that comes in that," said Saxton.

Saxton's daughter, Kelsie Schelling, went missing seven years ago. She founded Missing Persons Day as a way to keep her daughter's name alive and advocate for other missing persons.

One of the day's most powerful moments is the reading of names. When Saxton decided to honor missing loved ones, she thought it was important for the names of every single missing person to be read out loud.

"To just have this day where our missing loved one is recognized and remembered," said Saxton.

Paul and Ramona Blee are still searching for their daughter, Marie Ann Blee. She was 15 years old when she went missing in 1979. The couple has attended the Missing Persons Day event ever year.

"Not everybody understands what it’s like to have someone missing but all these people that come to this meeting understand and know," said Ramona Blee.

The Pracht family said it's their first time at the Capitol for Missing Persons Day and they wanted to feel that sense of support. Eric Pracht has been missing since July 2016. He was a paramedic for the South Park Ambulance District and was last seen near his Lakewood condo when he decided to go for a walk.

“We’re still out there looking, it’s just nice to see that he’s still cared about after three and a half years. We’re not going to give up until we find him," said Randy Pracht, his dad.

Victoria Jamerson is still hoping to find answers about her son's disappearance. Clinton Sutton went missing five years ago and was last seen being dropped off at the Sun Spring Motel in Colorado Springs.

"It reassures me a little, helps know that I’m not alone because it is hard out there being alone and you start thinking many different things. When you have no answers, you know, you just think crazy stuff," said Jamerson.