Skip to comments.Mourners Gathering At Site Where Danielle's Body Was Found: (Post van Dam News Here)
Posted on 03/01/2002 4:04:47 PM PST by FresnoDA
By Seth Hettena
March 1, 2002
"The memory of her soul compelled me to come down here and say a last goodbye," Davis said Friday, cradling her 7-month-old daughter and wiping away tears. "To actually see the place where her innocent sweetness was lying under a tree." Davis, 26, added white flowers to a growing memorial of messages, bouquets, a pink teddy bear and a stuffed blue bunny that marks the place where authorities believe a neighbor dumped Danielle's body weeks ago.
Dental records confirmed Thursday that remains found by a rural roadside 25 miles east of San Diego were those of the little girl, who vanished from her bedroom Feb. 2.
The cause of death could not immediately be determined and may never be because of the body's state of decomposition, said Police Chief David Bejarano. Further tests were under way.
Danielle's parents, Brenda and Damon van Dam, said the unflagging efforts of more than 2,500 volunteers who searched a vast area stretching from the ocean to the desert left them with "an overwhelming sense of gratitude and closure."
"With love for an innocent child and for one another, the community has brought her back to us, and for that gift we offer our most sincere and heartfelt thanks," the van Dams said in a statement. "Even though the final outcome is horrible, we could not have imagined the rest of our lives without this closure."
A memorial service is expected later this month.
A neighbor, David Westerfield, 50, was charged Tuesday with murder, kidnapping and possession of child pornography. He has pleaded innocent and is being held without bond.
Authorities said they found traces of Danielle's blood in Westerfield's motor home and on an article of his clothing.
The self-employed engineer spent the weekend of Danielle's disappearance traveling in his motor home, stopping in the desert east of the city, authorities said.
A hunch led volunteers to the area the remote road was one Westerfield might have taken the weekend Danielle disappeared, said Bill Garcia, a private detective who coordinated searches.
Nearby residents said they were unsettled by the discovery of Danielle's body so close to home.
"It kind of sickens us," said Charles O'Neill, 28, who lives about a mile away. "We've been driving by this road every day for the past month and knowing she's that close is something we never would have imagined."
Take your stuffed animals and flowers to the Children's Hospital. Hug a child, take them to the zoo, but don't hang out at a murder site. Sick, sick, sick.
I join you in this opinion. It's so affected.
I look at these people and wonder why ???????? There are tragic deaths every day in every city. Obviously because it is publicized, they jump on the band wagon. It really bugs me. Grrrrrrrr !!!!!!
There was another child here in San Diego, missing since Wednesday, recovered today alive. I hadn't heard a THING about it before this afternoon. Go figure.
I reported the John and Ken stuff because the globe doesn't seem to have a website, and several posters on the other thread asked for published information.
The globe info must be considered in context and not as fact. But lots of clintoon dirt first appeared in tabloids and was later proven out.
There is only one purple alien monster type tabloid and that is the Sun. But the average tabloid USUALLY has very stringent fact checking. They broke the story on OJ wearing the Bruno Magli shoes and many other scoops. They are mosty about what Jennifer Lopez wore and who had the latest plastic surgery. They will tell you if an actor is wasting away from cancer ... but their stories are fairly accurate ... not always, but often enough not to dismiss outright.
I couldn't agree more. But, just wait! It's been all over KOGO this afternoon (and anywhere else, really) that we'll get to "enjoy" the twisted and the Media whores perform at a public memorial in a couple weeks.
I'm really annoyed with Hedgecock's "Never Again" festival/political-gangbang scheduled for Monday. LET HER REST! She went 'missing' (likely died) 30 days ago today. At this point, the girl's still being robbed of her basic human dignity. The parents are celebrities now. It's all quite sick.
A few years ago some scungeal blew away the night crew of a Pizza Hut here in Tucson, two months later the compulsive mourner were still filling the walkway with flowers, they finally shut down the restaraunt, no way they could re-open it with all that junk piling up everyday.
Whatever happened to making a donation to some charity in the name of the deceased, lighting a candle at church and stepping aside to let the relatives mourn in peace? That's how things used to be done.
But I am embarassed of posters who post from them, and expect us to take it as seriously as National Review or American Spectator.
I take an even dimmer view of the posters who put it up without proper sourcing because they more interested in sensational controversy than contributing to discernment of the truth.
Has anyone seen an interview with (or anything about) Westerfield's bar partner the night of the abduction? I think his name was Gary. I'd love to hear his side of if Westerfield decided to go to the desert on the spur of the moment ... and what excuse for leaving the bar at 10:30.
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