CHARLESTON, S.C. (KDVR) — Gannon Stauch, the Colorado Springs boy who captured hearts and minds world-wide with his disappearance and murder back in January, is bringing people together once again.
On Saturday, loved ones, friends and even complete strangers online joined together to celebrate the 11-year-old’s life and legacy.
Stauch was reported missing from his home just outside of Colorado Springs in January.
In March, his stepmother Letecia was arrested on murder charges for his death in South Carolina.
Saturday, the 11-year-old’s birth parents had to endure another unthinkable milestone in South Carolina, the state where Stauch was born.
“At about 10 o’clock this morning I had to bury my sweet son in a cemetery in Charleston,” Stauch’s father Albert said.
“I knew he had a huge calling, I didn’t know at 11-years-old the calling he would have,” Stauch’s mother Landen Hiott said.
In 11 years, Stauch made a world-wide impact. He started to inspire loved ones the second he came into the world as a premature baby battling to breathe on his own.
“When the nurses came in and said he has a 10% chance of survival,” Hiott said.
“I will let you know he left this world fighting too and that’s why we keep going,” Albert said, adding “Justice will be served, it is a long and painful process but it’s coming and if you learn from this event never take the precious moments for granted.”
Gannon’s little sister Liana and his stepsister Mia shared heartfelt memories about their role model.
“Bubba was the nicest person, my only brother and favorite brother, any time I was going to tell on him he just made me laugh and forget about it,” Liana said.
“I love him so much and I just really wish he could still be here with us but I know he is so I’m very thankful for that,” Mia said.
Many have come to know Gannon as a hero, known as G-Man. Hiott explained the meaning of “G-man” for her personally.
“The the reason for man is because he was a gentleman, he’d open the doors, he’d say yes m’am, no sir,” she said.
Stauch also inspired a “G-Man” Thunder ride Saturday before his celebration of life. People rode to five on Stauch’s favorite spots in South Carolina while raising money and awareness for child abuse prevention.
“This was gods plan, he was only with us for a season but he changed the lives of hundreds, thousands he brought people to their knees,” Stauch’s Uncle Brandon said.
“God’s plan, it is hard as a parent to look at it that way but I just look around and all the unity and togetherness,” Albert said.
Albert left those watching the memorial with a heartfelt final message.
“Hold your children close and love them because when it’s over, it’s over and you can’t get it back,” Albert said.