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Thousands gather to remember Jessica

  |   Oct. 17, 2012 at 9:03 AM
ARVADA, Colo., Oct. 17 (UPI) -- More than 3,000 people gathered at a Colorado church Tuesday night to remember a 10-year-old girl who was found dead after disappearing on her way to school.

Because Jessica Ridgeway's favorite color was purple, Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper wore a purple shirt when he addressed the mourners at Faith Bible Church, The Denver Post reported Wednesday.

"It's for Jessica," Hickenlooper said he told a staffer when he arrived at his office that morning wearing the purple shirt.

The staffer's eyes filled with tears, the governor said.

Hickenlooper urged the community to rally around Jessica's family, as well as one another.

Pastor Rick Long said Jessica's family had received messages of support from as far away as Japan.

Jessica disappeared from her Westminster home Oct. 5 when she left the house to walk to her nearby elementary school.

Five days later, her body was found at a park in Arvada several miles from her home.

So far, investigators said leads in the case are slim, the newspaper reported.

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