we are all made up
of those who have built us
and those who have
At 19-years-old, Katelin
Akens had her whole life in front of her. The Virginia native had relocated to "Arizona's Playground," Lake Havasu City, known for its diverse landscape and never-ending offerings of outdoor recreation. Katelin was engaged to her best friend from childhood and they were planning a Spring wedding. She was starting cosmetology school so she could make a career out of doing what she loved: talking to people while playing with hair and makeup. And her kid-sister had just given birth to a baby boy. Katelin was so anxious to fulfill her destiny as "cool aunt," she booked a flight home to Virginia before her sister could even get home from the hospital.
On Saturday, December 5, 2015, after meeting her nephew and spending a few short days with her family and friends, Katelin had to catch a flight back to Arizona. Her tight-knit family was sad to see her go, but relieved they would all be reunited soon given that Christmas was right around the corner. Katelin's mom dropped her off at her ex-husband's house in Spotsylvania County, Virginia, so he could take Katelin 75 miles up the road to the airport. And Katelin was never seen or heard from again.