School fundraiser honors missing Bedford kids - WKRN News 2

School fundraiser honors missing Bedford kids

Posted: Updated: Feb 13, 2013 04:51 PM
Chloie Leverette, 9, and Gage Daniel, 7, were first thought to have died in a house fire that claimed the lives of their grandparents Molly and Leon McClaran on September 23. Chloie Leverette, 9, and Gage Daniel, 7, were first thought to have died in a house fire that claimed the lives of their grandparents Molly and Leon McClaran on September 23.
UNIONVILLE, Tenn. -

It's been almost five months since nine-year-old Chloie Leverette and her seven-year-old brother, Gage Daniel, disappeared.

"Of course everybody knows what happened in our community back in September," explained Tim Miller, the kids' elementary school principal. "It's not news that you ever want to get to hear."

The siblings were originally thought to have been killed, along with their grandparents, in a house fire in Unionville, Bedford County but their bodies were never found.

"You think about it every day, some days more than others," said Miller.

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation issued an Amber Alert for the children in the weeks following the fire. The alert will remain active until the children are located.

At Community Elementary School in Unionville, Chloie and Gage are being remembered as part of a school PTO fundraiser.

For the "Viking Voyage," all grade levels take turns running or walking laps around the school's gym. Kids get pledges from the community to raise money, which goes toward extra school expenses.

Principal Miller said anonymous donors paid to have their names printed on the t-shirts.

"When you have 710 kids in a school you get pretty close to all of them," Miller told Nashville's News 2. "It's our way of remembering they're part of us."

Miller said there are still many questions about the children's disappearance and it's something the whole community would like closure on.

"Almost everywhere I go I get the question 'Have you heard anything about the children?' and my answer to them is 'We haven't heard anything'," said Miller, "I hope one of these days I can say 'Yeah, they found a bone' or 'Yeah, we found them.'"

Leon McClaran, Jr., whose father passed away in the fire, has a son in the fifth grade at Community Elementary School.

"It's had all of us kind of emotionally bothered, because we can't find the kids," said McClaran. "We would love for them to be brought home if they're alive; we don't know that, we just hope that one day did you get to come home."

McClaran said the question of "what happened" to Chloie and Gage has baffled their family. "Everybody has opinions. At the night of the fire I would've said those kids were in that fire, but because they're not found, and no traces of them, it does raise flags."

The family is offering a $2,000 reward for information leading to Chloie and Gage's whereabouts.

Anyone with information should call the TBI at 1-800-TBI-FIND.

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