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Balloon release ceremony held on 2-month anniversary of Jayme Closs’ disappearance

BARRON -- A balloon release ceremony was held Saturday, Dec. 15 on the two-month anniversary of the disappearance of 13-year-old Jayme Closs.

Closs has been missing since Oct. 15, when her parents were found murdered in their Barron home. Deputies  responding to a 911 call found that someone had broken into the family's home in Barron and gunned down James and Denise Closs.

Authorities believe Jayme was abducted and have ruled her out as a suspect in her parents' deaths.

Jayme Closs

Hundreds of people attended a gathering Dec. 12 in Barron to light a "tree of hope" for Closs.

"We just pray every day and we just hope for her safe return," said her uncle, Mike Closs.

Jayme Closs "Tree of Hope"

Detectives have pursued thousands of tips, watched dozens of surveillance videos and spent countless hours searching for Closs, but their efforts haven't yielded any suspects.

The 16-foot tree was erected at Riverview Middle School and decorated with messages such as "Pray for Jayme" and "Bring Jayme Home." The tree was lighted in blue, her favorite color, and green to symbolize missing child awareness.

At that time, Barron County Sheriff Chris Fitzgerald told WEAU-TV that there had been no new breaks in the case, but he said the event lifted his spirits. The gathering included songs, the release of lighted lanterns and a message from Barron native and "The Voice" finalist Chris Kroeze.

"I haven't smiled in a long time, so this is awesome," Fitzgerald said.

The event was coordinated by the school and by Hormel Foods and Jennie-O Turkey Store, which employed the Closs parents.

"May this tree of hope for Jayme, filled with shining lights, be a symbol to us, to our community, that the darker it gets, the brighter light of hope shines," the Rev. Ron Matthews said.

If you have information that can help find Jayme Closs, contact the tip line at 1-855-744-3879.  Officials have also added an email address, jaymetips@co.barron.wi.us which will accept any photos or videos related to possible sightings.

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