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Butterfly release honoring Gabby Petito

Posted at 11:45 PM, Sep 25, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-25 23:45:08-04

NORTH PORT, Fla. — The North Port community releasing butterflies to fly to heaven with Gabby Petito.

Petito dreamed of being a travel vlogger. She created a YouTube channel, Nomadic Statik, with her fiance, Brian Laundrie.

She shared her travel journey on YouTube and Instagram. The last picture she posted on her Instagram was in front of a butterfly mural in Ogden, Utah.

The photo accrued more than 200,000 likes and inspired a local North Port woman to organize a butterfly release.

“She loved butterflies from what I hear, so it’s a nice remembrance to Gabby,” Lisa Correll, the butterfly release organizer.

More than 100 people showed up to honor the 22-year-old. Robert Moffat said he wanted to pay tribute to Petito.

"From what I hear, it seems like she would light up your day," he said.

That light captivated the world.

“My gosh, what can you say it’s just touched this world. It’s just touched, everyone. It’s devastating," Joni Lauzon said.

Many people in the North Port community saddened by the loss of Petito. Moffat said it's a tight-knit community, but it's heartbreak what happened.

He said he wants justice for Petito.

"I know a lot of people are thinking that. What happened to Gabby shouldn’t have happened," he said.