Queen Creek, Chandler communities distribute signs remembering Preston Lord
CHANDLER, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) — Police and the FBI are nearly three weeks into the search for suspects who beat a teenager to death who was leaving a Halloween party in Queen Creek.
The East Valley community remains in shock over the death of 16-year-old Preston Lord and came together again on Thursday to honor his life and push for justice by distributing ‘Light Up The Night’ signs. “I’m vacillating between super sad and super angry,” Queen Creek mother-of-four Katey McPherson, who wrote the words on the sign, said.
McPherson didn’t know Preston Lord but says his death has hit the entire tight-knit town of Queen Creek hard. “I was just really looking for something to uplift people,” she said. “And light always brings positivity to darkness. So I’m just trying to bring the community together.”
McPherson’s social media post of different ways to “Light Up The Night” took off, eventually reaching the eyes of FASTSIGNS Phoenix owner Scott Koehler. Koehler, like the name of his company, suggests, quickly turned McPherson’s words into something tangible. “It’s an easy way for me to get involved,” Koehler said. “It doesn’t cost a fortune but would cost someone a lot of money if they had to go out and pay for it.”
Koehler got to work making over a hundred of the “Light Up The Night” signs, which tell families to light a candle until Thanksgiving Day for Preston, for his family, and for the safety of all kids moving forward. “I would just like to see that justice prevail in this situation,” he said. “And that we bring peace to Preston’s family, and we prevent this from happening again in the future.”
Throughout the day, people, often parents of kids near Preston’s age, came to get their signs and share a similar message. “I don’t feel that we’re safe until these people that are doing this are behind bars,” Gilbert resident Sara Bubela said. “And the youth of today learn that it’s not OK to go beating on people.”
“I think we’ll pull together,” fellow Gilbert resident Kerry Sargiotto added. “With these signs, the more we can give out, the more the awareness. Someone will come forward.”
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