Bell Tragedy: Keeping The Spirit Alive
BELL - #PrayForBell has been trending all over social media and in the hearts of many. After a tragic murder suicide took the lives of eight people, we show you how people in Bell are hugging their family a little tighter tonight.
We can now take a better look at Don Spirit’s trailer home where the shooting happened. The Gilchrest County Sheriff’s office has pushed back the crime line tape. As they have finished processing the home, the family starts their journey to seek closure.
The residents of Bell wore their hearts on their sleeves today. "Why it has to happen? It just needs to stop. All the violence, all the things that are going on… it just needs to stop," said Louise Kham one of Sarah Spirit's friends.
A memorial service took place at Bell High School where family and friends prayed, sang and cried together. Friends of Sarah, like Carol Pindado say they have fond memories of the family. "Sarah and her kids. Those kids were always happy, playing, never did anything-- like innocent," Pindado said.
During the services-- counselors were on staff assisting others and raising awareness about domestic violence. Something the Spirit family battled with. We talked to Donna Fagan the Executive Director of Another Way, Inc., a domestic violence and rape crisis center. Fagan said, "I don't know how many people knew about what was going on before, so to not keep quiet, to speak out, to let people know what you're going through; to ask for help. There is a lot of help out there if people know it's there and are willing to seek it out."
The ceremony was followed by a vigil. As the fire of the candle lights shined bright, Bell hoped to keep the families spirit alive. There has definitely been an outpour of community support. Near the crime scene residents left flowers and stuffed animals to honor the innocent lives lost.
And that's not all, children in the community touched by the situation are fundraising for the family. "We went to Chiefland and walked by every business and everybody that was walking and stuff and we asked for donations and we raised $600," said Kelsie Tuten of Bell.
Tori Tuten, a classmate of one of the children killed—Kaleb and her siblings are pitching in. "Whenever we walked into the hallway everyone was crying. So we all had to go into this one room of computers and we all started balling because they talked about Kaleb," Tori said.
Cory Tuten her brother said, "I think it's really good how everybody is getting together and helping and supporting the family. And helping everyone during this tragedy."
If you wish to donate you can visit any Alarion Bank and deposit money under the account: Bell Florida Tragedy. There is also a website set up to help the family pay for the funeral of the children. Anyone wishing to contribute financially can click here.
- Bell Tragedy: Don Spirit's 911 Call Released
- Superintendent of Gilchrist County Schools Speaks Out About the Kids Murdered in Bell
- 8 Dead Including 6 Children in Gilchrist County Murder-Suicide
- DCF Releases Past History with Sarah Spirit and Her Children, Funerals Held Today
- Bell Tragedy: State Rep. Says DCF Needs To Be Accountable
- Bell tragedy: Dash cam vid & FDLE report released reveal motive
- Bell Tragedy: Community Mourns Lives Lost
- Bell Tragedy: Investigators Knew About Alleged Child Abuse
- Gilchrist County United After Tragedy
- How To Help Kids Cope After Elem. School Shooting