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Community vigilant after Cherish Perrywinkle murder

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Updated: 6/26/2013 11:54 pm
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Neighbors living near where Cherish Perrywinkle's body was found are staying vigilant. They're talking to their kids about stranger danger and talking to each other about what they can do to keep their children safe. 

"I passed by Walmart today and I said, 'I'll never pass by this way again without thinking of that child,'" said neighbor Perdita Wilson. 

A heartbreaking story has turned into a painful lesson Wilson is teaching her daughter, as they added balloons to a massive memorial for Perrywinkle Wednesday night.  

"I talked to my daughter and I did not hide anything from her. I let her watch the news. We talked about it constantly. We talked about what to do if this happened to you," Wilson said. 

Wilson said she and her daughter, Aliyah, visit Walmart every week. Aliyah is 8 years old, just like Cherish. Wilson said it could have just as easily been her daughter.  

Four days after Cherish's body was found, police announce they're now searching for a stroller believed to be in the back of murder suspect Donald Smith's van.

Wilson said she is now keeping her eyes peeled for it. She knows that's a part of the case she likely won't be able to help with. But as she and her daughter said a prayer over the memorial, she said this is something she can do.  

And as her innocent daughter wiped a tear from her mother's eyes then grabbed her hand, they sent a prayer to the sky, for another little girl who can no longer hold her own mom's hand.  

"It's not enough I wish I could do more but just leaving balloons behind, saying a prayer, and letting her know that our prayers are with her and with her family," Wilson said.
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The views expressed here do not necessarily represent those of Action News Jacksonville

calvin1972 - 6/27/2013 1:32 AM
1 Vote
My hearts goes out to the family and i'm also very glad that the community show a lot of caring about Cherish. I hope justice be done to her and make him pay.

angels072258 - 6/26/2013 11:31 PM
1 Vote
I am so glad to see the community coming together for this family. Such a tragedy and a loss. This family will need lots of prayers lifted up for a while. I will commit to pray all the time for God to pour out His Spirit on that family and bring comfort and peace. God bless them always.
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