Friends of murder victim Katie Socci host fundraiser for her daughter

"Hands for Sydney" started as a small benefit set up by Katie Socci's friends and her sister but it grew quickly as donations poured in from across the state and country. Soon, Katie's friends saw just how many lives she had touched and how many people who had heard her story.

"Just want to show their support for Katie, for Sydney - the whole community. It's affected everyone not just people who knew Katie," said Katie's sister Jennifer.

Hundreds came out to the event, and thousands of dollars were raised for Sydney's trust fund. Even strangers made a point to come to the event and support the family. "It's amazing to see that home town values still matter. And Sydney can grow up with a whole city for a family," said Jeffrey Lee.

The process of organizing the benefit brought back memories of good times and the heartbreak of losing Katie but also the feeling that somehow she would always be with them.

"When you miss her every day and you see all of these people, they make you realize that person is no longer with you but they make you very's hard," said Tina Redfield.Money raised from the benefit is going to Katie's young daughter Sydney.

The 22 month old is now being raised by her grandparents with the support of an extended family of friends all across the country.

"Katie wouldn't have left us without knowing Sydney would be in good hands and that's what this is about. It's about honoring Katie and making sure that the person she loved the most and was her actual best friend is going to be properly taken care of," said Alison McCarthy.

Katie Socci was last seen on June 14th. Her body was found near a walking trail south of Auburn the next day. Katie Socci TMs parents have been raising 22 month old Sydney Renee since then.

You can find more information on the Hands for Sydney facebook page .

Socci TMs ex-boyfriend David McNamara remains a person of interest in the case but no charges have been filed. He is currently being held on unrelated drug charges.