Vigil for held for Hanford murder victim Melanie Pate

September 4, 2013 5:22:49 PM PDT
A community came together to honor a Hanford mother, who police say was killed by her husband at their home on Labor Day.

Hundreds of people turned out in to remember Melanie Pate at a candlelight vigil.

A song cuts through solemn silence, as hundreds of candles burn bright. A way for family and friends to tell Melanie, she won't be forgotten.

Melanie's memory was everywhere, from special t-shirts to her initials on the baseball diamond.

"Melanie was 100 percent baseball," said Ray Beech. "Her son played year-round ball and she went wherever she went. As I worked on the field last night, I kept wanting to see her walk through, she was an incredible person."

Friends say when Melanie wasn't on the field with her son, she was devoting her time to her daycare.

"We were both daycare providers," said Stephanie Beech. "We were daycare moms we took care of kids, same professions. She was baseball but she was very dedicated to her son too, she did everything for him."

Melanie's death came as a shock to everyone in the community. Chilling images of crime scene investigators at the Pate's house on Labor Day, the day police say Melanie's husband, Todd took her life.

"We got back from the beach on Monday night," said Tracy Heimlich. "That's when we heard about it. We couldn't believe it, we're still in shock."

Hundreds of balloons were released in her honor. Black and orange, the color of son's club team, a gesture to send Melanie a final goodbye.

Donations for the vigil will go to Melanie's 13-year-old son.


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