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Ogden residents pay tribute to Gabby Petito

By Deborah Wilber - | Sep 20, 2021
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Ogden residents held a candlelight vigil in memory of Gabby Petito at The Monarch on Monday night, Sept. 20, 2021.
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Ogden residents held a candlelight vigil in memory of Gabby Petito at The Monarch on Monday night, Sept. 20, 2021.
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Ogden residents held a candlelight vigil in memory of Gabby Petito at The Monarch on Monday night, Sept. 20, 2021.
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Ogden residents held a candlelight vigil in memory of Gabby Petito at The Monarch on Monday night, Sept. 20, 2021.

Ogden joined several other cities in the state and across the country Monday night to remember Gabby Petito, a Florida woman whose mysterious disappearance took a tragic turn over the weekend with the announcement that remains believed to be hers were found in Wyoming.

A crowd stood in silence outside The Monarch as the sun faded beyond the horizon, casting an orange glow upon those who came to say farewell to the 22-year-old woman, who documented the cross-country trip with her fiance on social media.

Candles, flowers, letters and various mementos were laid at the foot of The Monarch’s butterfly mural on 25th Street, where Petito stood recently in a post on her Instagram page. A framed photo of her smiling in front of the mural was placed at the site, resting against the very spot she was pictured.

“We can appreciate her beauty as she appreciated Utah beauty,” said Jake McMahon, who helped organize the local gathering.

Ogden residents Kayla Herrick and Drake Osborn signed a remembrance book provided.

“You don’t have to know someone to show them love,” Osborn said.

Childhood friends McMahon, Seth Schilling and Jenna Burdess wanted to do something for Petito, so they put together the vigil in her honor. Schilling believes it’s good to be a good person.

“We can appreciate her beauty as she appreciated Utah beauty,” McMahon said.

Everything provided for the vigil and all that was left for Petito will be sent to her family.

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