'Gabby Petito Foundation' created to help families of missing children; funeral to be open to public

BLUE POINT, Long Island (WABC) -- Gabby Petito's father, Joseph Petito announced the creation of 'The Gabby Petito Foundation.'

In a tweet, he said the foundation will give resources and guidance to families of missing children.



"No one should have to find their child on their own," he said, "we are looking to help people in similar situations as Gabby."

A link to the Gabby Petito Foundation can be found here.

A funeral will be held Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. at Moloney's Holbrook Funeral Home, with the service open to the public.

Moloney Funeral home will be taking extraordinary measures to preserve the privacy of the family and friends of Gabby Petito at Sunday's funeral service. The Suffolk County Police Department will have extra resources for traffic and safety.

A vigil was held Saturday night in Florida for Gabby Petito.

People who were touched by her story gathered in North Port - home to Brian Laundrie and his family. Those in attendance say they want justice for Gabby, and they had a message for her parents.

Gabby Petito's mother, Nicole Schmidt posted to Facebook following a 12-day silence.

She wrote, in part,

"As I scroll through all the posts, my heart is full of love. I wish I could reach out and hug each and every one of you. Your support has been so overwhelming."

On Friday, residents of Blue Point resolved to find light in the dark tragedy. They lit candles for Gabby Petito in a memorial that stretched as far as the eye could see - to show her family they aren't alone.

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Residents across Bayport-Blue Point held a vigil for Gabby Petito Friday evening, placing candles at the base of their driveways to remember the young woman whose disappearance has garnered nationwide attention.



Organizers spread the word of "Light the Night For Gabby Petito" in the hopes the event will not only spread across Long Island but also the country.
The candles were being given out along with a request for a $20 donation, with the proceeds going to Gabby's family.

RELATED | Gabby Petito disappearance timeline: What we know so far

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Gabby Petito was traveling with her fiancé, Brian Laundrie, in a cargo van the two had outfitted as a makeshift recreational vehicle for a months-long cross-country road trip when she mysteriously disappeared.


The FBI said investigators are still seeking information from anyone who may have seen the couple around Grand Teton.



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