Remembering Kara Kopetsky’s 23rd birthday

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BELTON, Mo. -  Sunday, February 17, 2013, was a day filled with mixed emotions for Rhonda and Jim Beckford.

"God gave me Kara on this day. It's a tough day.  Because not a day goes by that I don't miss her," Rhonda said about her daughter, whose 23d birthday was Sunday.

"Kara loved her friends. She loved to socialize. She loved life and I miss the power of her smile and the intensity in her eyes," Jim Beckford recalled about the stepdaughter he and his wife haven't seen in almost six years.

On May 4, 2007, Kara Kopetsky, then a 17-year-old junior, was last seen leaving Belton High School.  The FBI, state and local authorities conducted countless searches. Kara's family and friends also searched on their own, passed out scores of fliers, held marches, vigils, but after nearly six years, there's still no sign of the young Belton resident.

The Belton Police Department and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children released a computer-generated, age progression photo of what a 23-year-old Kopetsky may look like today.

Kara's parents pray it help them find their missing daughter.  Anyone with information about Kara Kopetsky should call the Belton Police Department or the TIPS HOTLINE at (816) 874-8477.

"She's become Kansas City's missing child almost," Rhonda Beckford said.

"For the person or persons who know something or who could've possibly done something, we want to let them know we're not giving up. We're not going away," Jim Becford told FOX 4 News during an interview at the family's home Sunday.

Related Story:
Police release aged photo of Kara Kopetsky

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