Vigils Remember Ricky Holland, One Year Later

By: Tony Tagliavia
By: Tony Tagliavia

With candles, prayer and song, a community remembers a young boy believed to be lost a year ago.

"It's a betrayal to find out it didnt happen that way," Beth Benson of Williamston said at the vigil in her town.

Benson, and her husband, Bill, came back from a vacation in the middle of last year's nine-day search for Ricky Holland that enveloped their community. They came home to find messages about the missing boy on their answering machine.

"'Be on alert look for Ricky.' And it came two or three times," Bill Benson said.

The Bensons didn't take part in the search, but Laura Maynard did, walking the distance from her apartment to the search headquarters.

"Three miles," Maynard recalled.

Like some of the other searchers, Maynard says she feels betrayed now that prosecutors believe Ricky's adoptive parents, Tim and Lisa Holland, are responsible for his death.

Those charges have prompted some to call for changes to state foster care laws, including the woman who organized the Williamston vigil.

"To bring awareness and keep Ricky's name in the public eye -- for the need for reform in foster care and adoptions in the state," organizer Bobbie Titus said.

Thats something Ricky Holland's biological mother was talking about as well, at a smaller vigil in Lansing Township.

"Keep them safe. And keep Ricky alive in everybody's hearts and souls," Casey Jo Caswell said.

Titus says her group, Rallies for Ricky, will be at the Hollands' court hearings in September to bring attention to the cause.


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