PUTNAM COUNTY, Fla. – As the disappearance of Haleigh Ann-Marie Cummings begins to make headlines across the country, word of the case has reached the ears of a younger group -- the missing girl's classmates.
Haleigh is a kindergartener at Browning Pearce Elementary School in San Mateo. She was last 10 p.m. Monday in bed at her home in the Hermet's Cove mobile home park where she lived with her father, his 17-year-old girlfriend and her 2-year-old brother.
Staffers at Browning Pearce said Haleigh's classmates have begun asking questions, but they said not all of the children truly understand what's going on.
Rebecca Graham, a first-grader at the school, had a message for Haleigh on Wednesday.
"Your parents are looking for you, and your parents love you and they hope you're OK," Rebecca said.
"She's been scared -- scared to sleep at night because they don?t know what's going to happen," said Rebecca's mother, Tami Graham.
Browning Pearce Elementary School Principal Debra Buckles said every child at the school was sent home with a letter and is aware of the situation.
"She is a sweet, sweet, beautiful, tiny little girl, and we're just all holding out all hope that she will be found and be back in school really soon," Buckles said.
For a lot of parents who have children at Browning Pearce, Haleigh's disappearance has really hit close to home because they said they live nearby the missing 5-year-old's family. They said because of the disappearance they will sure to do everything they can to make sure their own children stay safe.
"We just need to -- all of us need to lock our doors," said parent Carla Beatty.
Both parents and employees at the school said Haleigh's disappearance has made them want to hold on to their own children even tighter.
"It's every parent's worst nightmare. I just cannot imagine the heartache and the tragedy that they're going through," Buckles said.
Authorities said lots of tips have come in already and they continue to ask anyone with any information about Haleigh's disappearance to call the Putnam County Sheriff's Office at 386-329-0808 or the FDLE's Missing Endangered Persons Information Clearinghouse at 888-FL-MISSING.