Hundreds gather at vigil for Brendan Link Creato, 3-year-old found dead Tuesday
Just hours after the body of 3-year-old Bredan Link Creato was discovered in a wooded area in in Haddon Township, hundreds of community members gathered in the parking lot of a local church for a vigil in memory of the child, who had been reported missing early Tuesday morning.
Throughout the township, candles burned in windows and at makeshift memorials displaying pictures of Brendan and signs remembering the young boy. Supporters carrying candles made their way to the church as the vigil began. Following a prayer, the crowd walked to the residence where the toddler was last seen. Teens and young children dropped off colored pictures, stuffed animals, candles and a sign outside the residence.
Jaqueline Trump, one of the community members in attendance, said things like this "just don't happen" in Hadden Township.
"This doesn't happen here. It doesn't," she said. "It's not the type of neighborhood where we feel like you have to lock your door. Now apparently you do."
Nearby resident George Novitzky said the incident is a reflection of "the state of society now."
"This is tearing me apart," Novitzky said. "The mentality of society anymore - it's like it's just going away. I just don't understand."
Brendan was reported missing from his residence on the 100 block of Cooper Street by a family member at approximately 6 a.m. on Tuesday, authorities said. A search for the boy began, leading to the discovery of his body shortly before 9 a.m. in a wooded area off South Park Drive in Haddon Township.
The Camden County Prosecutor’s Office said no one had been charged in the boy’s death as of yet. Authorities have not indicated whether they consider the child's death accidental or a homicide.
Authorities are asking anyone with information to contact Camden County Prosecutor’s Office Detective Michael Rhoads at 856-225-8561 or Haddon Township Police Detective Don Quinn at 856-833-6208.
Dino Flammia and Louis Hochman contributed to this story.
Toniann Antonelli is the digital managing editor at NJ 101.5. Reach her at email@example.com, or on Twitter @ToniRadio1015.