Theresa Parker laid to rest
Story by Megan Boatwright
Eyewitness News Reporter
LAFAYETTE, WALKER COUNTY, GA. (WRCB)-- It's been more than three years since Theresa Parker went missing.
Saturday, her body was finally laid to rest.
Theresa Parker went missing in March 2007.
Her husband Sam Parker, a former Lafayette police officer, is serving a life sentence for her death.
In September, an Alabama farmer stumbled across Parker's remains.
On Saturday a police escort led a procession through downtown Lafayette as Theresa Parker was finally laid to rest.
It was a service and procession of honor. The dramatic impact of Parker's story is plain to see.
"The community came together around the family three and half years ago and the community came together around the family again today," says Pastor Jay Neal.
It's a day these people have been waiting for since Parker first went missing. Pastor and friend Jay Neal performed the ceremony.
"I don't know how it could be more fitting, them bringing everybody back together to celebrate somebody that was loved as much as Theresa," says Neal.
From the pulpit, Neal spoke of the legacy of love Parker leaves behind and the lessons her story taught about domestic violence.
"This almost opens another chapter for the family and community too in reference to the domestic violence awareness and I think you'll see some rallying around the family to really promote domestic violence awareness and hopefully protect someone else from the same situation that Theresa found herself in," says Neal.
The word closure was used more than once throughout the day. After the family delivers their loved one to her final resting place, they also say thank you.
"This community has never gave up on finding Theresa," says Jon Wilson, Theresa's brother-in-law.
Through a written statement, Parker's brother-in-law and sister express thanks to those who helped search.
"We want to thank all the land owners who have searched their farms," says Wilson.
And to the farmer who finally found her.
"His name will be in our thoughts forever," says Wilson.
But Jon and Hilda Wilson's final words are a more of a "until we meet again" rather than a final goodbye.
"Over the past few years, visiting us in Florida, we've welcomed you into our home and prepared a place for you. Now I'm asking you to return the favor and help the Lord prepare a place for us," says Wilson.
Saturday's service was held at Lafayette First Baptist Church.
Theresa Parker's body was laid to rest at the Lafayette City Cemetery.