Hundreds attend prayer service for Fishers teen - 13 WTHR Indianapolis

Hundreds attend prayer service for Fishers teen

Updated:
Peyton Riekhof's SUV was found submerged in Geist Reservoir Sunday. Peyton Riekhof's SUV was found submerged in Geist Reservoir Sunday.
Hundreds of people gathered to pray for the Riekhof family Monday night. Hundreds of people gathered to pray for the Riekhof family Monday night.
Riekhof graduated from Hamilton Southeastern High School earlier this year. Riekhof graduated from Hamilton Southeastern High School earlier this year.
FISHERS, Ind. -

A prayer service was held Monday night for a Fishers teenager who went missing last week.

Eighteen-year-old Peyton Riekhof went missing early Thursday morning, prompting a frantic search. Her SUV was found in eight feet of water in Geist Reservoir late Sunday afternoon.

Police are working on identifying a body found inside the submerged SUV. Police called off the Silver Alert for Peyton on Sunday.

The service started at 8:30 pm at Hamilton Southeastern High School, where Riekhof graduated just weeks ago. The service was organized by the Young Life group.

About 200 people were in attendance, among them were friends and neighbors, standing together in song, sharing memories of the missing teenager. They recalled that she was a "good dancer" and "always there for you no matter what, non-judgmental."

Young Life's Ryan Ahlwardt plans to be outside Mama Bear's coffee shop at Fall Creek and Brooks School Road all week to talk to anyone needing to discuss Peyton's disappearance and the tragic discovery over the weekend in Geist Reservoir.

Ahlwardt says he's already met with 16 Hamilton Southeastern students and parents who were friends of Peyton. He says his goal was to listen while they had a chance to share their grief and concerns.

"A majority of the kids I was with were just stopped. Some of them were just numb," said Ahlwardt. "Such a tragic event as this, there's no words (that) are going to help. I think just that sense of community and fellowship with one another was the best thing that could happen."

Kimbel Richardson, a crisis counselor with St. Vincent Stress Center, says it's up to everyone to watch for signs of trouble in young people - differences in their behavior - and report that.

"Just invite them, ask them, 'Are you okay? Is everything going alright?' and make notice of any change and then call that parent," said Richardson.

After the service Monday, some friends told Eyewitness News what they love about Peyton.

"She was always a radiant joy. She always had a smile on her face, always. So we'll miss her," said Jack Faraci.

"She was always very pleasant. Never had anything to say bad about anyone," said Krista Sullivan, whose daughter played sports with Riekhof.

Natalie Brown graduated from Hamilton Southeastern a year before Riekhof.

"It's going to take a long time for them to get over it, but everyone is supporting them and that helped a lot," Brown said.

Peyton's friends are also sharing their grief on a Facebook page set up to remember her.

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