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Petition started to create a 'Lily Alert,' memorials sprout up around Chippewa Falls

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The Chippewa Falls community is rallying together to mourn a girl whose life was taken far before her time.

When 10-year-old Lily Peters was reported missing on Monday morning, the Chippewa Falls community began sharing her image and description rapidly to try and find the young Parkview Elementary student. But Monday afternoon, that missing persons case took a devastating turn and became an active homicide investigation when her body was found.

And while the Chippewa Falls Police Department currently has a juvenile in custody in association with her death, the community continues to come together to show their support for Lily and her grieving family.

Driving through downtown Chippewa Falls, one sees large memorials outside of Leinenkugel’s Brewery and Parkview Elementary, and dozens of purple ribbons have been hung up on street lamps and businesses to show support for the young Chippewa Falls resident.

In addition to these visual displays, area businesses have stepped up for Lily, offering free merchandise for Chippewa Valley citizens. Jacobson’s Ace Hardware is offering free purple light bulbs, the Chippewa Store is giving out stickers and pins, and other businesses around the city are giving out shirts and other apparel to publicly show their support for Lily Peters and her family.

Change.org petition

A topic of concern after Lily Peters’ death is why authorities didn’t issue an Amber Alert in the wake of her disappearance Sunday night. Some say it was because it was unclear whether Lily was in any immediate physical danger, but one local father is taking steps to ensure this sort of occurrence doesn’t happen in the future.

Eric Henry started a Change.org petition to create a “Lily Alert” for local cases that don’t qualify for a traditional Amber Alert. Currently, Amber Alerts may only be issued for children believed to be in danger of serious bodily harm or death. They also require a description of the child, plus a suspect or vehicle to look out for.

“Any parent would agree that when a child is missing, even for a short amount of time, and they need help then help should be sent,” Henry said in the petition. “The community is devastated and rallied to start a search group for the missing child. We can do better as a community and must be proactive. We need an alert with less regulations around it so we can respond quicker to missing children.”

The petition had collected over 50,000 signatures as of Wednesday afternoon.

Throwback Time Capsule: Explore the history of Chippewa County

Each Saturday, the Chippewa Area History Center showcases a piece of local history in the Herald. The Area History Center at 123 Allen St., has multiple rooms of displays about Chippewa County history and genealogy.

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This Memorial Day weekend, we remember and honor all military veterans and highlight the service and sacrifices of the Bushland family of Chip…

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From the Oct. 11, 1934, Herald-Telegram:

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Chippewa Herald, May 13, 1913

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This 1908 photo shows the Gotzian Shoe Co. of Chippewa Falls.

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Flooding has been a frequent occurrence in Chippewa Falls through the years. This September 1941 photo shows floodwaters covering River Street…

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This A. A. Bish photograph of a fisherman on Long Lake is a great example of how Chippewa County residents did “social distancing” in years past.

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Father Charles Francis Xavier Goldsmith was born in Rochester, New York. At the early age of 13, he entered the provincial seminary of St. Fra…

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In 1994, local citizens began planning for a Senior Center to call their own.

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Born in 1872 at Jim Falls to a French-Canadian father and a Belgian mother, Louis “Louie” Blanchard saw Chippewa County grow from a wooded wil…

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April 3, 1913, The Daily Independent (excerpt.)

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The supper club near the south edge of Lake Wissota that is known today as Connell’s Supper Club was built about 1932 by George and Charlotte …

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Flora and George Ginty are the founders of the original Chippewa Falls newspaper, publishing the first issue on Jan. 29., 1870.

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On Feb. 18, 1902, the Daily Independent newspaper (now the Chippewa Herald) published the following letter as written to Mr. Leslie Willson fr…

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Born in Germany in 1846, August H. Mason moved with his parents to Green Bay when he was three years old. The Mason family moved to Chippewa F…

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The May 3, 1929 issue of the Chippewa Herald-Telegram announced the following news.

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The Hospital Sisters of St. Francis sent Sister Rosa and three other sisters to Chippewa Falls in June 1885 to a small home, their first hospi…

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When plans were finalized for the Wissota Dam and Lake Wissota, it was realized that the existing Yellow River Bridge would be below the water…

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On Wednesday morning (Dec. 24, 1873), about 3 o’clock, a fire broke out in the Waterman House, and in less than an hour, the whole structure w…

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Santa (Chuck Card) and Mrs. Claus (Marie Meinen) brought the spirit of Christmas to the children (and adults) of Chippewa Falls for many years.

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Time Capsule: 1868 view of Chippewa Falls from the Notre Dame Church (East Hill)

 

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Deer hunting is a tradition that many Chippewa County families take very seriously. This 1988 photo shows second and third generation members …

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Dr. Bill Hopkins visited his ninth great-grandpa, Stephen Hopkins of the Mayflower voyage, in 2008 at Plimouth Plantation in Plymouth, Massach…

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The history of Chippewa Falls begins with the Ojibwa who lived here as early as 1797. That year Michael Cadott who was the principal trader fr…

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“Lansing A. Wilcox, last surviving Wisconsin veteran of the Civil War, was born in Kenosha (WI) March 3, 1846. In February 1864 he enlisted fr…

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On December 20, 1924, as the Soo train No. 2 was traveling east across the railroad bridge on the west side of Chippewa Falls (near where the …

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Mr. Leslie Willson (1847-1906) was born in Pennsylvania. He moved to Minnesota with his parents in 1862 and in 1867 moved to Eau Claire to wor…

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From 1920 to 1977, a building 5 miles east of Chippewa Falls on Highway X was a popular entertainment destination. The building was known over…

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Before Seymour Cray Jr. became the “father of supercomputing,” he honed his science skills at Chippewa Falls High School. The following articl…

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Recently, the family of Duane Boettcher donated photos and historic football clothing that belonged to their dad. Duane played football for Bl…

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This vintage colorized postcard depicts historic log driving on the Chippewa River.

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Lorenz Bischel, a German immigrant and farmer, moved to Chippewa Falls in 1863. He began his first meat market in 1883 on Bridge Street in Chi…

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In the fall of 1926, plans started for the construction of the Northern States Power Co. hydroelectric plant located at the foot of Bridge Str…

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Chester Adgate Congdon was born in Rochester, New York, in 1853, the oldest of six children born to Sylvester Congdon, a Methodist Episcopal M…

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Glen Loch Dam neared completion of its repairs in the fall of 1984. The familiar feature of Irvine Park was originally constructed in about 1875.

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June 13, 1931: Chippewa Herald newspaper: An A&W root beer stand was opened in Chippewa Falls at Bridge and River streets.

"We can do better as a community and must be proactive. We need an alert with less regulations around it so we can respond quicker to missing children.”

Eric Henry, Chippewa Falls, creator of a petition to establish a 'Lily Alert' for local cases that don't qualify for an Amber Alert

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Margaret “Marge” Hebbring, a 73-year-old resident of Chippewa Falls, is a member of the Ojibwe tribe in northwestern Wisconsin. Ojibwe and Chippewa are versions of the same word, pronounced differently because of English and French accents.

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