Bismarck's Capitol Mall was a sea of red Wednesday evening as hundreds gathered for a candlelight vigil to pray for and honor Savanna LaFontaine-Greywind, whose body was found in Fargo Sunday night.
"She was a sacred giver of life, gone too soon. A beautiful woman on her way to motherhood," said Amber Warman, domestic violence advocate in wellness at United Tribes Technical College.
"She is an angel smiling on her baby. Savanna didn't choose to leave. She was taken. In the days ahead, we must honor her," she said.
Attendees were encouraged to wear red, in honor of indigenous women who are missing and murdered. Candles and glow sticks were waved in LaFontaine-Greywind's memory.
Native American prayer and music filled the air as heart-shaped balloons with handwritten messages for LaFontaine-Greywind were released to the heavens.
"I'm at a loss on finding the right words as to why we're all here tonight," said John Eagle Sr., of the Standing Sioux Tribe. "Savanna's on a journey. We want to make sure she goes where she's supposed to go. To a place with no suffering, no pain...only good."
A sign in one window of the Capitol read, "Prayers for Savanna."
"There's a power that's stronger than us to carry us," said Leander McDonald, president of the United Tribes Technical College. "Keep on praying."
LaFontaine-Greywind was 22 years old and eight-months pregnant when she went missing Aug. 19.
Around 1:30 p.m. that Saturday, LaFontaine-Greywind left her family’s north Fargo apartment to help an upstairs neighbor who said she needed a model for a dress she was sewing. LaFontaine-Greywind never returned home.
On Aug. 24, police entered the neighbor's apartment by force, arrested one of the tenants, Brooke Crews, and found a healthy newborn baby girl believed to be LaFontaine-Greywind's.
That same day, police arrested Crews' live-in boyfriend, William Hoehn, at his place of employment. But LaFontaine-Greywind remained missing despite intensive searching.
On Sunday, LaFontaine-Greywind's body was pulled from the Red River near Fargo, wrapped in plastic and duct tape.
Family and friends of LaFontaine-Greywind are asking the public to shine a red light on their front porches for eight nights, symbolizing the number of nights she was missing.
Communities across the state are holding vigils for LaFontaine-Greywind. One will take place at 2 p.m. Thursday at the bridge in New Town.
Another vigil is planned for noon Friday at the tribal office in Fort Yates.