On Saturday the community of Mountain Brook, AL including many of Natalee Holloway’s classmates turned out for a fund raiser for the Holloway family. The community came together in support of the Holloway/Twitty’s symbolized by group of Natalee’s teenage girl friends put on their matching silver wishbone necklaces, a sign of their lasting friendship.
At the fund-raiser Saturday afternoon, a group of six Mountain Brook teenage girls put on matching silver wishbone necklaces, a sign of their lasting friendship. “Natalee still has hers,” Mallie Tucker said at the concert raising money for the search for Holloway. “Natalee is my best friend and I’d do anything to bring her home.” “We just get together and pray,” said Frances Ellen Byrd, also wearing her wishbone necklace. “We can’t wait for her to get home.”
The benefit was held at Oteys, co-owned by Doug and Joy Smith, with musicians Matthew Mayfield and Will Mason of the Moses Mayfield band performing as well as donated items being auctioned off.
“This is a way we can show our support,” Joy Smith said. “It’s a strong community,” Doug Smith said. “Everybody’s ready to do everything they can.”
Some of our own Scared Monkeys attended the benefit and described it follows:
Well, driving up to it gave me goosebumps. There were yellow balloons everywhere, people spilling out all over the parking lot, and the age range was from newborn (12 weeks) to this adorable couple AT LEAST in their 70′s. Coolers of beer, soft drinks, etc. and tables with hot dogs and such were all out on the patio – free for the taking. A girl had a table set up for people to make donations – there was always a line. Another table was set up w/ a silent auction for these beautiful crosses made by Anita Miles (she who started the yellow ribbon campaign w/out even knowing the family). I’m sure that will bring in hundreds. Lots and lots of teenagers, but just as many grown ups. I was also pleasantly surprised to see some friends of mine that didn’t know the family at all – provided support just because they wanted to.
While I was waiting to introduce myself to Marcia Twitty, (Natalee’s aunt, sister in law of Jug and Beth), I overheard Paul DeMarco, local state representative, asking what he could do to help and offering to go to Aruba.
We had asked some of our Scared Monkeys to pass out fliers to show our support and to ask the community of Mountain Brook to feel free at any time to email us about any events, occurrences or stories that they wished to share regarding Natalee Holloway. Our Scared Monkeys did not disappoint.
I took the fliers with me but wanted to make sure with Marcia that it was appropriate to distribute them and she was more than OK with it.
Another one of our Monkeys (aka Charlotte) that attended the benefit described it like this:
I would say about 300 people there. Otey’s, the place where it was held is in a shopping center in Crestline Village which is one of the 3 villages of Mountain Brook. Otey’s is pretty small so everyone was outside. It seemed to me there were all ages there from students to their parents, to younger parents with young children. It kind of had the atmosphere of a big block party- just people getting together for a common cause. This community has been extremely supportive of the Twittys. You have to understand that Mountain Brook has always had the reputation of being an upper class, somewhat snobby community, which is really not the case. I have never been so proud to live here as I am now, seeing how some many people, most of whom didn’t even know Natalee have pulled together to help this family.
The mood of the benefit wasn’t a sad event at all as we were told and our reader managed to catch a glimpse of Frances Ellen Byrd and Ruth McVay who she recognized from TV. Another one of our fellow Monkeys that attended the benefit said, “the people I spoke with were generally positive. Also, just heard on the local news here that 19,000 dollars was raised”. However, what most stuck out in another one of our Scared Monkey’s mind of the entire benefit was this moving image she will always remember:
I think the most vivid picture that stands out in my mind is the brick, 2-story, 4 sided clock that you see as you enter Crestline Village and the huge yellow bows placed on each of the 4 sides.