TAMPA, Fla. - The family of Gabby Petito is using their pain as motivation to help others a year after her death.
Petito’s family believes she was murdered on August 27, 2021. Investigators say Petito’s fiancé, Brian Laundrie, killed her last year while the couple was on a cross-country trip in a van.
Petito’s family is honoring her life and legacy by shining a light on domestic violence.
Gabby Petito's family is helping other victims of domestic violence as they mark one year since her death.
"One year ago, your life was cut short. You are my inspiration every single day. I miss you more than words could ever express," her mother, Nichole Schmidt, wrote in a post online.
Gabby’s father, Joseph Petito, wrote: "Exactly 1 year ago today you were taken from us. We miss you every day. We cry every day. You have inspired so many to live, travel, and leave their unhealthy relationships. We love you Gabby."
As part of their efforts to raise awareness, they asked people to ‘Light up the Night’ on Saturday to honor those who lost their lives to domestic violence. Advocates say that kind of public support could help someone else leave an abusive relationship.
"When you see somebody’s light on to raise awareness of domestic violence or you hear somebody talking about this is an issue that's important to them, it helps a survivor know there are actually people who care. There is someone I could turn to. I'm not alone," explained Mindy Murphy with The Spring of Tampa Bay.
Earlier this month, the Gabby Petito Foundation donated $100,000 to the National Domestic Violence Hotline in support of The Hotline’s "Hope Can’t Wait" to help others survive turbulent and abusive relationships.
If you or someone you know is experiencing relationship abuse in any form, help is available.
Gabby Petito's family helps her legacy live on one year after her death.
The National Domestic Violence Hotline provides free, confidential support 24/7/365. Text START to 88788, call 1-800-799-SAFE(7233), or chat online at TheHotline.org.
The Spring of Tampa Bay’s 24-Hour Crisis Hotline can be reached at (813)247-7233.