Candlelight Vigil for Alexis Murphy

Nelson Co., VA - Thursday night's vigil for Alexis Murphy at Nelson County High School was probably the first time a lot of people in the community were able to come together in one place.

For nearly every rain drop falling on Nelson County's football field, there was a tear drop falling from the eyes of loved ones who desperately want Alexis Murphy home.

Under rain soaked skies, a flood of umbrellas covered the roughly 400 attendees that came together for the first time publicly to pray for Alexis' safe return.

Organizers said the turn out shows just how much Alexis means to this tight knit community and to{}families like the{} Shepards.

"I taught her in 3rd grade, she was a wonderful, sweet student. Sanford is a classmate with Alexis. Delia just finished volleyball camp with Alexis. She was just a very special girl," said Elizabeth Shepard.

To Delia Shepard, Alexis is more than a team mate -- she's a mentor.

"She's someone I look up too when I play volleyball. She can play to the skills that I want to be one day," said Delia Shepard.

The town's message is clear: Alexis may not be with her family right now, but until then , this town is standing with Alexis' family.