Family and friends of Vilet Torrez came together Tuesday evening for a candlelight vigil in honor of the Miramar mother of three, who has been missing since March 30.
"We just thought it would be good to get her name out there and to actually have an event that people could come and pay their respects and sort of, I don't know if say goodbye would be the right term, but sort of feel at peace with what's happening,” said her brother, Javier Blanco.
He said he is trying to be strong for his parents.
"I can't even begin to try to understand what their perspective is like and what they're going through – losing, or thinking about the possibility of losing a daughter,” Blanco said.
More than 100 people attended the vigil at Torrez’s church, Casa Caná at 480 E. 8th Street in Hialeah, which began at about 6:30 p.m. Casa Caná was her favorite place on Earth, her friends and family say.
Those attending prayed inside the church, then lit candles outside. Torrez's mother, Gladys Blanco, was the first to do so.
She said she has faith her daughter is coming back, but Torrez's sister Nayiva Blanco was not so sure.
"I just hope wherever she is that she can feel this love that we have for her," she said.
Miramar Police said last week that they suspect foul play in the disappearance of Torrez, 38, and named her estranged husband, Cid Torrez, as a person of interest.
“He says he’s innocent,” Cid Torrez’s attorney, Richard Della Fera, said then. “He had nothing to do with her disappearance and he’s hopeful she’ll come home and be with the children and put the family back together.”
Their three children are staying with their maternal grandmother. The Florida Department of Children and Families temporarily removed them from Cid Torrez’s custody earlier this month after a family member made a confidential call to the Florida Abuse Hotline fearing the man would try to hurt himself or the couple's children.
Two of the Miramar Police detectives who are working on the case were at the vigil to show support Tuesday night.
"It's very important to keep praying because we do believe in miracles, and at the end that's all we have," Nayiva Blanco said.