A candlelight vigil was held Friday in Jaren Lockhart’s hometown of Albany, La. The 22-year-old's dismembered body washed up on a Mississippi beach a week ago and now two suspects are in custody.
It was an emotional night on the Northshore as family and friends of lockhart prayed and lit candles to remember the 22-year-old. They're still struggling to make sense of her tragic death.
A deep sense of loss continues to weigh down on the Lockhart family. Donna Lockhart said she has been in a daze since hearing about her daughter’s gruesome murder.
“I just want to say that I love my daughter with all my heart. Whoever did this to her, I hope your suffer. I hope you hurt like you hurt me and my family.”
“Dear God, we pray for the families and friends of Jaren Lockhart. We pray that you be with them and comfort them through this hard time,” said Richard Baham, a family friend, leading a prayer at the vigil.
Family and friends stood together, holding tight to burning candles remembering Jaren.
“It’s humbling seeing how many people are here showing their support for her,” said Kristina Murphy, the vigil organizer.
Jaren’s family says the 22-year-old was a loving mother who loved to draw and experiment with different hair colors.
“I know my sister is up there just looking down and she’d be happy that all these people are here for her right now. It means everything to our family,” said Lance Lockhart, Jaren’s brother.
Lance Lockhart said his sister always dreamed of being a hair dresser. That dream was cut short a little over a week ago. According to the NOPD, her boyfriend filed a missing person report when she disappeared from Bourbon Street where she worked as a dancer. Days later, her severed torso would wash up on a Mississippi beach.
“I know the cops are going the best they can though. God don’t sleep. There will be justice,” said Lance Lockhart.
Jaren's horrific death is one her family refuses to explain to the three-year-old daughter she left behind. But when she is old enough this is what her grandmother will tell her “about how beautiful her mom was and that her mom loved her with all her heart.”