TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - Dozens of families who have lost a child to abduction or murder traveled to the state Capitol on Monday to share their stories.
Many have a new-found hope that their loved ones will return.
For 15 years, families who have lost a loved one have come to the Annual Florida Missing Children's Day to share their stories.
Hillary Sessions' daughter, Tiffany, disappeared from the University of Florida 24 years ago. A new investigator is now on the case, giving her mother hope.
"Human trafficking now here in the United States is a huge issue, and I've always wondered, 'Could someone have taken Tiffany?'" Sessions said.
The event also brings police who have done outstanding work, K9s who have solved crimes, and children who have fought back together to tell their stories.
This year marks a bittersweet anniversary of sorts. It's been 30 years since Florida set up an agency to look for missing children.
The parents of Jennifer Kesse, whose daughter disappeared in Orlando seven years ago, say they have new hope after three women were rescued in Ohio.
"I think positiveness of three women who were held the longest 11 years, their successful recovery has just recreated hope for so many," said Joyce Kesse, Jennifer's mother.
Ali Gilmore and her children disappeared from her Tallahassee home in 2006. This was the first year her brother could bring himself to attend the event.
"People really don't mean any harm. They say, 'I know what you feel,'" Percy Walker said. "You could sympathize but you really don't know."
Unfortunately for the families, the unthinkable is all too real. Forty-thousand children are reported missing every year in Florida. The vast majority of them come home safely.
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