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Vigil to Be Held For Double Homicide Victims; Donations Accepted for Surviving Children

Natalie Jablonski

A domestic violence victim support agency is holding a candlelight vigil in Rhinelander Thursday night for the three children who survived the apparent homicide of Thomas and Jennifer Ayers.

Law enforcement believes the three young girls were locked in a room while Jennifer Ayers’ 17-year-old daughter Ashlee Martinson killed her mother and step-father.  The couple was found dead Sunday. 

Shellie Holmes, Director of Tri County Council on Domestic Violence, says the agency is holding a vigil and collecting donations for the children.

“We know that giving is a way of healing, that people can feel like we respect the dignity of victims, we respect the confidentiality, and this is what we can do.”

Tri County Council is accepting monetary donations, as well as books and toys appropriate for girls ages two through ten. 

Oneida County Sheriff’s Office Captain Terri Hook says because their home is considered a crime scene, the three girls could not take very much with them. 

“We already know that the community wants to do something, just from some of the calls that we’ve gotten. And I know Social Services has received some calls, asking what they can do. The community has always been very giving in this kind of an issue.”

Confidentiality rules mean Social Services cannot disclose the names or locations of the children.

The vigil is 7 pm Thursday at the Oneida County Courthouse.  Speakers include faith leaders and advocates who will talk about bringing the community together.

Tri County Council is accepting donations by mail at:

PO Box 322

Rhinelander WI 54501

Or at its administrative offices:

3716 Country Drive, Suite 6, at the intersection of County Highway K and Highway 47.

Clothes and other personal items are not being accepted. 

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