Community helps family of girl killed after reportedly abducted - KCTV5

Community helps family of girl killed after reportedly being abducted

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LEAVENWORTH, KS (KCTV) -

A heartbroken Kansas community is using social media to help the family of a 5-year-old girl who was killed after reportedly being abducted.

It started late Friday night when Cadence Harris was allegedly kidnapped from where she was staying in Atchison. 

Her accused abductor then led police on a chase into Platte County before turning around, driving back into Kansas and into Leavenworth. That's where the chase ended and Cadence died.

The man accused of taking her, Marcus McGowan, was shot by police and is recovering at a hospital in Kansas City.

Cadence's biological father, Dustin Rudy, sent several messages to KCTV5's Nathan Vickers, expressing grief over his daughter's death.

"All I have are a few great memories and lots of regrets for not being more involved in her life," Rudy said.

He said he feels cheated more than anything for losing the opportunity to make a connection with his daughter later in life.

Rudy also wishes to thank his friends and family who called him during the last few days.

For Cadence's mother, Christina Harris, her coworkers are quickly becoming a source of support. Harris' friend, Laura Hawes, met her six months ago at the High Noon Saloon.

"She is probably one of the hardest workers I've ever seen. As a mom, I've never seen anyone as in love with her kid as she is," Hawes said.

The two hit it off right away. Hawes even met the whole family.

"Cady was an absolute delight. I actually had the privilege of spending Easter with them this year and watching her run around getting all the Easter eggs. It was just the glow she had on her face. Definitely a momma's girl. Just an absolute delight," Hawes said.

Now, she is leading an effort to raise money to help the family with funeral costs.

"I'm in a unique position to be just enough outside to come together and be able to do this for her as friends, as members of the community," Hawes said.

She is also running a Facebook page to update people on memorial services and vigils for Cadence.

"It has been such a huge tragedy not just for her family but to the entire community. It's something everyone seems to feel is important," Hawes said.

Hawes says the family has not planned a service for Cadence yet.

To help with Cadence's funeral expenses, her family asked that donations be made via GoFundMe or in cash at High Noon Saloon & Brewery, 206 Choctaw St., in Leavenworth. Click here to donate online.

Fundraising events and funeral information will be posted on the Angels for Cadence Facebook page as they are scheduled.

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