UPDATE: Citizens help repair defaced memorial for murdered teens

By  | 


After catching our story last week, Steve Misner was moved to help.

"It's a tragedy as it is, and then to have to come out here and visit and find out if there's more damage or something stolen, that is just kind of heartbreaking to the family, and I hate to see that happened to anybody," he told 11 News.

Misner and his 15-year-old daughter bought new solar lights and installed them at the mermorial Monday.

The original lights had been in place to illuminate the memorial at night and were stolen by crooks earlier in the month.

"I have no clue why someone would do this to a family that's already been victim of a crime," Misner told 11 News. "When I saw this and heard about this, I was so touched that I thought I had to do something to help out this family.

" ... Just seeing that somebody would vandalize any memorial; doesn’t matter if it’s kids, law enforcement or firefighters, anybody, you just respect those memorials no matter who it is, no matter what’s happened, just respect the family and let them have peace and move on with their lives."

PREVIOUS (5/6): Family and friends say they are outraged after items were stolen from a memorial for two teens murdered in cold blood.

Derek Greer and Natalie Cano-Partida were gunned down execution-style in March 2017. Court documents obtained by 11 News detailed the harrowing final moments for the Coronado High School students: they driven to an isolated location and told they were going to die; Natalie was offered a chance to say goodbye to her family on Facebook, but when she didn't log on, she was told she lost her chance. The teens were ordered to sit in an execution position and shot multiple times.

They were just 15 and 16 years old at the time of their deaths. Nine of the 10 people said to be involved have pleaded guilty.

A memorial was erected on Old Pueblo Road in the spot Derek and Natalie were killed, giving loved ones a place to go and remember.

"They [Derek's parents] work really hard on it. And they try to keep it up more. They go there, I think, every day," said Chloe Callaghan, a friend of Derek.

A few days ago, the family discovered thieves had stolen most of the items at the memorial. Below is a before and after:



The stolen solar lights illuminate the memorial at night.

"I was really mad ... how can you do that somebody? It's kind of messed up, like disrespectful," Callaghan said.

Callaghan was close friends with Derek since elementary school -- so close she named her 7-month-old son Hunter Greer Anderson in Derek's honor.

"He liked to make people laugh all the time. He was just kind of cool to hang out with," she told 11 News.

She says the only way to make things right is for the person or people involved to return the stolen items.

"Bring it back. It’s super disrespectful. I would say bring it back.”