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Family, friends and residents say goodbye to slain Logan girl

(Photo Credit: Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News)

LOGAN – There was a packed chapel and streets overflowing with supporters for five-year-old Lizzy Shelley. The little girl who was reportedly murdered by her uncle in Logan was laid to rest.

There were a lot of tears being shed inside the Nyman Funeral home in Logan, as her family and other loved ones looked back on Lizzy’s short but impactful life.

She’s remembered as a girl who truly loved nature, who was fascinated with rocks, butterflies and rainbows and as someone who could see just as much beauty in a weed as she did a flower.

Her mother, Jessica Whipple said, “I’m grateful she will get a place of comfort covered in butterflies and flowers.  The only thing that gets me through is knowing she’ll be taken care of with so much love.”

Whipple also thanked people who showed her family love and support ever since her daughter disappeared.

“The way the whole community messaged me… I read them all.  They were so beautiful and helped so much.  You guys kept me going,” she added.

(Photo Credit: Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News)

Lizzy’s step-father, Dietrich Black, says she was like his co-pilot who reminded how he should be driving every time they traveled together.  He said he was honored to see her look up at him and call him her dad.

“I watched her first words, taught her to ride bike.  She made me so proud to be her father,” he said.

Members of the family gave a brief statement before the funeral services started.  Black’s father, Norman, said she will be deeply missed.  He hopes people will think of Lizzy and the life she represents.

“As you’re out and about and you find yourself looking at a sunset or any of the beauty that is this earth we live on, think of Lizzy,” he said.

Along the street outside of the funeral home, hundreds of motorcyclists packed the road to escort Lizzy to the Logan City Cemetery.  Many people who had never met her felt they needed to pay their respects.  One woman, Christina Ledesma, says she has three daughters, so, “This hit home.  This hit right straight in my heart.”

The viewing was especially trying for Logan resident Candida Jensen.  She lives on the other side of the fence where Lizzy’s body was found.  She says her family had to get away for a few days because the sight of officers collecting the body was too traumatic.

Jensen said, “The evidence that we saw so early was so bad.  It just made it hard and our hearts bleed for her poor mom.”