EVANSDALE, Iowa - Sunday marks two years since two Black Hawk County cousins went missing.
Lyric Cook, 10, and Elizabeth Collins, 8, were last seen in Evansdale on July 13, 2012.
The girls’ bicycles were found that day on the southern edge of Meyers Lake, near Interstate 380. A massive search ensued, with investigators even draining and dredging a portion of the lake. About five months later, hunters found their bodies about 20 miles from Evansdale in Bremer County.
Two years later, and there are still no answers as to who killed the girls.
As many in the community hope for progress in the investigation, people have made big progress in remembering Lyric and Elizabeth. Angels Park started as a community project after the girls went missing.
“It’s really moving and it’s moving in a good direction,” said Angels Park Board President Dona Frickson.
“It’s something that we could do for Elizabeth today that she would like. She would love it out here,” said Elizabeth’s Father, Drew Collins.
People came together at the heart of Angels Park Sunday afternoon. One thing after another, the memorial is coming together. Volunteers planted flowers and pulled weeds near the four gazebos and shelter space. Organizers are getting ready for concrete work later this week.
“Some angels stepped up this past week and have come and said that they want to help us with the sidewalks,” Frickson said.
Jody Patterson reached out to help with the sidewalks after her own struggles with cancer.
“What goes around comes around -karma. When I’ve needed help, people have been there for me. This was a tragedy that happened to every one of these girls, and it’s a good way to make a nice memorial and to pass it on,” Patterson said.
As the work continues, though, time is standing still for the Collins family. They said it doesn’t feel like two years has gone by.
“I try not to look at the clock because every time I look at the clock, I go ‘oh this is what we were doing at this time two years ago’,” said Elizabeth’s Mother Heather Collins.
As the second anniversary of their disappearance comes and goes, everybody at the park hopes the third anniversary brings more answers.
“Next year we want to be celebrating the capture of somebody ... We are just waiting for the tip to come in. Somebody has got the information; they just need to bring it in,” Drew Collins said.
“We are just waiting for justice to come, and in the meantime this is for them, for all the angels,” Frickson said.
The Collins family said they are still working with investigators.
While this park started after Lyric and Elizabeth went missing, it’s now a bigger project that commemorates five girls. There’s a gazebo for Donnisha Hill and Evelyn Miller and the shelter in the center is named after Lindsay Nichols. Organizers hope that the island in Meyers Lake acts as a memorial for many people’s loved ones as times goes on.
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