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“There’s still good loving people:” Petersen family presented with holiday cheer

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MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- The generosity of our community was on full display today as a group of volunteers payed a visit to the family of Laylah Petersen.

Petersen was killed in November. Her family says today's visit proves there are still a lot of good people out there.

Laylah's family got a call not long ago from a man who wanted to bring them a tree, some decorations and gifts. The outpouring they say, was more than they expected.

It's called the season of giving for a reason. Outside a home on North 58th Street, lights are strung and presents are unloaded.

Bango, the Milwaukee Bucks mascot, dropped by, and it was hard not to be merry.

"Good day for us to be out here, good day for Bango. It's a good day," said volunteer, AJ Traylor.

Volunteers hope to shine some holiday spirit on a family that's had more than its share of tragedy in 2014.

"We brought trees, we brought lights, ornaments, candy canes," said Traylor.

Inside the home where 5-year-old Laylah Petersen was shot by an unknown gunman, Laylah's big sister Destiny and her cousins open some early Christmas gifts.

Then, help volunteers decorated their new tree.

"I had no idea that they were going to bring Bango or all these presents," said Tracy Martinez, Laylah's aunt.

Laylah's aunt is moved by the gesture.

"There's still good loving people left in this world," said Martinez.

Destiny remembers how every Christmas, she and Laylah put a star on top of their grandparent's tree.

"It's like the north star when Jesus was born," said Destiny, Laylah's sister.

Destiny and Laylah's mom, Ashley Fogl, is trying to focus on what they have this Christmas, instead of who's missing.

"I still have this piece missing from me, but I have my family," said Fogl.

Laylah's family says in an unexpected way, her death has helped them see the good in their city.

"It's a great city and I think sometimes we lose faith and sight of that," said Martinez.

After everyone left on Thursday, Laylah's family told FOX6 News that her legacy might be that she brought out the kindness and generosity of so many people.

All of the decorations and gifts were donated by Home Depot, Hupy and Abraham, and an organization called Voice of Fatherless Child.

A $10,000 reward has been offered for information leading to an arrest in the Petersen case. Anyone with information should contact the Milwaukee Police Department at 414-935-7360, or ATF at 1-800-ATF-GUNS. All calls will be kept confidential.

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