Mark Schnyder, NBC 5 News
As Saginaw Police continue to track leads in the killing of Alanna Gallagher, people in Saginaw tied purple ribbons around objects to keep her memory alive.
As Saginaw Police and the FBI continue to track leads and investigate new tips, people in Saginaw do their part to keep hope and a memory alive. Around trees, around light poles, even around dogs necks, purple ribbons reveal a community in mourning.
"We're all tight around here,” said Mark Valdov, who walked his dogs Watson and Anna down the street by the memorial to Alanna Gallagher near where the six-year-old’s body was found. Both dogs had purple ribbons around their necks.
“Everybody talks and once we found out this [the effort to get everyone to don purple] was going on and the folks at the child care were passing out the purple ribbons. We stopped by with I don't know how many other people last night to show our support for the family and the little girl."
Takisha James wore a purple shirt while running Saturday errands. She too is thinking about her city's loss and believes the purple is a way to keep people talking about the girl's unsolved murder.
"I do believe it's good to keep the word out there because actually it's made me aware,” said James. “I'm seeing red trucks everywhere and I'm like 'okay, is this the truck they've been talking about' so you know it makes you more aware."
Some area businesses are getting behind the effort, too. Every cashier at the Walmart was wearing a purple shirt or a purple ribbon in memory of Alanna Gallagher.
The woman responsible for this effort, Rachel Monk, stopped to buy more purple ribbons and purple shirts for herself and her children. Monk says she gets a warm feeling seeing all the purple around town.
"It makes me happy to see that Saginaw is actually the community I thought we were,” said Monk.
“We're not going to shut ourselves in our house and shy away from tragedy. We're actually going to come out. We're going to show our support, we're going to be there, we're going to help."