IOWA CITY, Iowa (KCRG) -- Mollie Tibbetts' family and friends, joined by strangers, gathered together Wednesday in Iowa City's Hubbard Park to honor the 20-year-old University of Iowa student who was found dead in Poweshiek County early Tuesday morning following a search that last more than a month.
Mollie was set to begin her sophomore year at the University of Iowa on Monday. Tuesday, the news came that no one wanted to hear: her body had been found and a suspect had been charged with murder.
Wednesday's vigil was organized by the University of Iowa Student Government and UI Dance Marathon, an organization Mollie volunteered with.
During the vigil, Mollie's brother Jake Tibbetts spoke to the crowd of several hundred people. He asked them to say hi to someone they didn’t know before with the hopes of making a new friend.
"Knowing that a thousand people just made a friend tonight in her name," Jake said it would honor his late sister's memory. "There are going to be people that made friends because of Mollie and that’s exactly what she would have wanted."
The University of Iowa reminded students that counseling services are available for students and staff who need assistance.