Thousands are mourning the death of Gabby Petito, the 22-year-old who was killed on a cross-country trip with her fiance. Now, her family is allowing them to attend the memorial visitation for her on Sunday.
Brian Entin of News Nation Now reported that the memorial for Gabby Petito will be open to the public. It will take place at Moloney’s Funeral Home in Holbrook, New York. The public service will last from noon until 5 p.m.
Her family will hold a private ceremony in Long Island, New York, where she was born, tonight. While the public cannot attend, they can take part in it. To do so, leave a lighted candle at the end of your driveway at 7 p.m. on Friday. They are calling it Shine a Light for Gabby.
It’s one of several memorials taking place this weekend for the 22-year-old. Police found her body in the Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming on Sunday. She traveled there with her fiancee, Brian Laundrie, as part of a “van life” YouTube channel. She last spoke to her parents on Aug. 25, and Laundrie returned home to Florida from Wyoming on Sept. 1 alone. He has since disappeared and police are searching for him. The FBI issued an arrest warrant for Laundrie this week for his actions after her disappearance.
Gabby Petito lived with Laundrie in North Port, Florida, for a year. Parents there said this death is hard to accept.
“She’s from North Port. She seems like our daughter from North Port. She belongs here,” Steven Carlisle told WFLA with tears in his eyes.
He added, “This should touch everybody. This girl with the beautiful smile. She looked like she had life in her hands, and it was taken away from her.”
Public Memorials Popping Up Across Country for Gabby Petito
In North Port, friends of Gabby Petito will release butterflies and lighted candles on Saturday at 7:15 p.m.
“I just want the family to know our community loved Gabby, even if we didn’t all know her,” Lisa Correll told The Daily Sun newspaper.
The event will take place outside of the North Port City Hall, which has become a makeshift memorial to the 22-year-old. People have piled stuffed teddy bears, flowers, photos, notes of grief, and more in her memory outside of the building.
Other public memorials have popped up around the country. Though the most popular is likely in Ogden, Utah. Gabby Petito’s final Instagram photo features the town’s famous Migrating Mural of a Monarch butterfly. Thousands have gone there to leave things in her memory.
Jake McMahon started the memorial and plans to send all of the items collected there to her family soon.
“I think of Gabby now when I see [the mural],” McMahon said. “I felt that we could pay some respect and some love to her family — and to her, of course.”