PENDER COUNTY, NC (WECT)- One family continued a tradition to honor a lost loved one Friday evening.
Kim Thomas gathers with friends and relatives along the side of N.C. Highway 133 every year to honor the memory of her deceased daughter, Tiffany Dawkins.
Dawkins was murdered in December of 2009. Her body was found in the small clearing of land just beyond the woods off of the road.
Two crosses mark the memorial where her body was found. Every year the crosses are decorated and the victim's friends and family release a bundle of balloons into the sky to honor her life.
Thomas said that this has been the hardest year yet to live without her daughter.
"I think about her every day I talk to her kids, cause one of them is just like her," Thomas explained. "We're just trying to keep my daughter's memory alive."
Dawkins has two children who were unable to attend the memorial. Thomas said the children will release balloons for their mother at a separate event soon.
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322 Shipyard Boulevard