WICHITA, Kan - As authorities continue their investigation into the death of five-year-old Lucas Hernandez, his parents say there will be a public memorial service for him. No details have been released at this point.
The family released a statement this weekend:
Many people in the community are reaching out to us, looking for a way to honor our beloved son. We are deeply touched by all those who are mourning and looking for a way to show how much Lucas has come to mean to them, but at this time we are asking for the public to put fundraising efforts on hold. We NEED this time to plan our child’s goodbye. We want to focus on laying him to rest in a manner that celebrates his short time on this earth. Afterwards, there will be plenty of time to work with the community and memorialize our beautiful child.
Shortly after Lucas was found, our family asked a friend to be our spokesperson and representative to the press and public. We were in a deep state of shock, and honestly did not know how to interact with anyone. While our world will never, ever be the same, we have come to realize that being a voice for our child is part of the healing process. We truly appreciate all the efforts that have been made to shield us in our grief. It gave us a few precious days to come to terms with the enormity of our loss. Jonathan and I are still reeling and learning how to live this new life without Lucas. We were never prepared to face this loss and we will probably make many mistakes as we go down what is sure to be a long, dark road. We just ask that you all be patient with us, give us time to grieve and help us ensure Lucas’ legacy is one filled with hope and kindness, not darkness and evil.
We have been out to Lucas’ site and removed some of the items. These include deflated balloons and most of the stuffed animals that were placed out near the bridge by the public. We would like everyone to know that we plan on leaving the rest of the items out at the site until June 24. On that day, we will collect nearly everything in order to display it at Lucas’ Memorial Service, which will be open to the public. We want to preserve and protect all the beautiful things so many left to honor our child. We will be making an announcement regarding Lucas’ services as soon as we finalize a few more details.
Thank you for your support,
Jamie Taylor-Orr and Jonathan Hernandez