WESTMINSTER, Colo. (CBS4)– The mother of a young girl who was abducted and murdered is trying to help other parents make sure they never experience what she had to go through.
Jessica Ridgeway’s mother, Sarah Ridgeway, want to help protect children with a new app called “The Lassy Project” which is a child tracking system inspired by Jessica’s story.
Sarah believes in the project so much she’ll soon be working for the company.
“She was special to me,” said Sarah.
Jessica left home to walk to school on Oct. 5, 2012, but she never arrived. Hundreds of people helped search for the girl before her body was found days later.
“Somedays are worse than others and I just kind of put one foot in front of the other,” said Sarah.
Now Jessica is leaving an impression like no other on parents and children nationwide with The Lassy Project.
John Guydon created the app after being inspired by Jessica’s story.
“It kept me up at night so I started looking at solutions and when I realized there was nothing out there to create peace of mind, I decided to create it,” said Guydon.
The app tracks a child via their smart phone’s GPS locator.
Parents map the typical routes their child takes to places like school, a park or a friend’s house.
If that child goes off route, an alert is sent out to parents which can then escalate to the Lassy Village of people signed up to search in a designated area.
Guydon reached out to Sarah after creating the app, looking for her blessing and feedback.
Sarah now considers the app part of Jessica’s legacy to help keep others safe.
“She wants to help other kids and make sure they don’t go missing like her,” said Sarah.
A year later it kind of feels like the more we talk about her, know about her and who she was and not what happened to her.”
Right now the app and to become part of the Lassy Village is free.
Austin Sigg, 18, pleaded guilty earlier this month to kidnapping, sexually assaulting and killing the fifth-grader. He also pleaded guilty to a May 2012 attack on a 22-year-old jogger at another park, also in the Denver suburb of Westminster.