Just over 24 hours after murder charges were brought upon two people connected to the disappearance of 20-year-old Heather Elvis, her parents are breaking their silence and speaking out.
News 13's Meghan Miller spoke with Terry and Debbi Elvis late Tuesday afternoon as investigators continue to comb through clues in hopes of finding their daughter.
The reality many have called a "worst case scenario" is beginning to set in for the Elvis family, as the daughter they watched grow into a young woman is now the victim of what's playing out to be a heinous crime.
"We've been on a roller coaster of emotions – it's almost like the first day all over again," Terry Elvis explained.
"There's a lot of missing people out there that have been missing a long time," added Debbi Elvis. "Their families need closure like we need closure."
Whether or not some of that closure came during a Monday morning bond hearing for Sidney and Tammy Moorer on indecent exposure and kidnapping charges related to the case is anyone's guess. Right now, the Elvis family is not allowed to comment on questions pertaining to Heather's actual missing persons case, evidence found or the suspects in fear of jeopardizing the case.
One thing is certain though – this is not the outcome Terry and Debbi had prayed for. But as the search continues, they say the power of community and prayer will get them through.
"It's hard to feel like you're doing your job as a father," Terry explained. "You can't help but feel like you failed. I face that every morning. This is the time that I know my daughter needs me the most."
As Terry and Debbi wrap their emotions around the latest developments in Heather's disappearance, the community is lifting the family up in support and prayer. Hundreds gathered at Peachtree Landing on Monday evening for a candlelight and prayer vigil, as news of murder charges in connection to the case had spread.
The couple says the emotional outpouring of the community has been overwhelming.
"The community coming together just showed me how much love and support that a community has for each other," Debbi said as she held back tears. "It's just very touching for people that don't even know you to love you and to feel your pain and to try to put themselves in your shoes."
It's the inseparable bond of a community during the family's darkest hours that has kept their hope for finding Heather alive. The Elvis family says the search to bring home their daughter is far from over.
"Together we're going to find Heather," Terry said. "We are going to bring her home."
The Elvis family is urging the community to stay vigilant and alert on their day-to-day travels for any clues that could lead to the discovery of Heather. They say they'll continue to do everything in their power to keep her case in the public spotlight until she is home for good.
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