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Fund Set Up to Cover Search Costs for Missing Teen

Sierra LaMar's family is asking for support in covering search-and-rescue expenses and in establishing a reward for information leading to the missing teen's recovery.

The family of has set up a fund to help with the costs associated with search-and-rescue efforts and to establish a reward for information leading up to Sierra's recovery.

Donations to the Sierra LaMar Fund can be made online or at any Chase Bank branch. According the online donation page, $3,680 has been raised so far.

Supporters have left comments on the fund's page saying that they are praying for Sierra's safe return home.

"As a mother in the area, I can't imagine what your family is going through," one supporter wrote. "Our prayers are with you for her safe return. This is the least we can do."

The 15-year-old Morgan Hill resident has been missing since March 16. Investigators believe she was and are continuing their search  efforts, including , today.

Marc Klaas, founder of the KlaasKids Foundation, said that searches can be financially devastating for families. He said he wasn't able to work during the two months his daughter, Polly, was missing.

"There is a financial toll that hits a family," he said. "There is lost work and then whatever level of support they are personally providing to search efforts."

Klaas said that while the LaMar family hasn't been asked to contribute financially to the searches, he wouldn't be surprised if lost time at work is impacting the family's finances.

"This experience can be financially ruinous," he said. "It can wipe you out financially, emotionally and psychologically. These are the types of things that you might never recover from."

A sorority sister of Sierra's older sister, Danielle, is also joining the fundraising efforts to help the LaMar family. Brianna Waterstradt, a senior at Sacramento State University and a member of the school's chapter of Phi Sigma Sigma, has organized at the campus.

"I've known Danielle for two years and felt kind of helpless," Waterstradt said. "I figured the best thing we could do is to help raise funds and get [Sierra's] face out there."

Waterstradt not only wants to raise funds to contribute toward searches, but said she hopes the fundraiser will bring greater attention to the case of her sorority sister's missing sibling.

"The more we get her face out there and the more attention we bring to this case, the better it is for Sierra," she said.

According to the event's Facebook page, 245 people are planning on attending, although Waterstradt expects the number of attendees to be closer to 350-400.

Waterstradt said she is asking attendees to donate $10, half to cover the costs of the catering service providing the meal and the other half to go towards Sierra's fund.

Yellow carnations will be on sale for $1 as well as yellow ribbons. Donations of any amount, Waterstradt said, are welcome too.

"Whatever you are willing to give is wonderful," she said.

Anyone who wishes to attend tonight's dinner does not have to RSVP.

Jim Shuster March 29, 2012 at 01:44 AM
There are donation containers set up at both Dutchman's Pizza in Gilroy and Morgan Hill. Dutchman's will continue donating time and food for those who are making this trek. God Bless the family of Sierra. 6940 Chestnut st Gilroy 16375 Monterey rd Morgan Hill
Michelle Fitzsimmons March 29, 2012 at 05:33 PM
Thank you for this information, Jim!

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