Over 2,000 people gathered at a Florida church on Thursday (October 14) to honor the life of 19-year-old Miya Marcano, who was found dead after being missing for over a week. Orlando police say an apartment maintenance worker where she lived "is the person responsible for her death."
Marcano's family wore royal blue –– Miya's favorite color –– to the services held at Cooper City Church of God in her hometown. Her casket was also royal blue and had a painting of her imprinted on the top of it. At the service, a crown was laid on top of the coffin as mourners remembered the beloved college student.
"I always pictured your face all over billboards and stores as a super model," Miya's uncle, Melvin Marcano said. "I never thought you would get your recognition this way."
Miya's other uncle, Marc Marcano, called on the media continue telling her story and said her tragic killing is "no different" from Gabby Petito, who found dead in a wooded area last month.
"We ask respectfully and expect that the media keep Miya's name and story out there," Marc Macano said. "Although we sympathize with the Petito family, Miya's story is no different and deserves the same attention."
"My niece did not deserve this, nor does any woman for that matter," Marc added.
Miya's cousin, Caili Sue delivered the eulogy, describing Miya as an ambitious young woman and "vibrant butterfly."
"Miya excelled in everything she put her mind to," Sue said. "From going on to win numerous pageants, cheerleading events and junior queen of the band for several years."
Miya's grandmother, Violet Delville honored her granddaughter's memory, recalling that "she was always a loving, kind-hearted person. She always wanted to help just like her foundation is going to do the same."
The Miya Marcano Memorial Foundation is being established to support families impacted by missing persons cases.
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