Safety fair held to empower children and parents

VALLEY PARK, MO - The family of Casey Williamson has turned their heartache into a way to help save lives.  Next week marks the 15th anniversary of the murder of the 6-year-old girl from Valley Park.  Family and friends hosted an annual safety fair at Valley Park School Saturday.

“Casey was such a beautiful and joyful child that she deserves to be remembered for good things and not just the horrible thing that happened to her,” said Della Steele, Casey’s great aunt.

The fair included a free opportunity for parents to leave with a DNA sample of their child and a CD with their child’s personal information.

“A lot of police departments have laptops in their cars and can transmit the information from that CD to their dispatcher,” said Craig Skinner, Missouri Child Identification Program.

He said the DNA sample is part of a tooth impression and could help give police canines a scent to follow.

“We just do this because we want the kids to be safe,” said Steele.

One of the displays included a mock bedroom from the organization Addiction is Real.

The group showcased some of the unsuspecting locations where children have been known to hide drugs.

Steele also hopes parents leave the fair remembering it’s not just strangers who can pose a danger to children.

“Kids are empowered through knowledge,” she said.  “If they have knowledge to draw upon, they’re going to make better choices.”