More than 500 people turned out Wednesday night in the small Idaho town of Hailey to show support for captured soldier Pfc. Bowe Bergdahl who vanished on June 30 just five months after arriving in Afghanistan.
Many attendees wore yellow ribbons and carried signs to show their support for the 23-year-old soldier. The vigil started at a coffee shop, where Bergdahl worked before he enlisted in the U.S. Army in 2008, and ended at a nearby park.
Suzanne Buchanan, a resident of Hailey, participated in the vigil with her husband and three children.
"Everyone has been talking about it and trying to show their support - bringing flowers for the family, bringing notes, thinking about him," she said. "We're just in shock this is happening here."
The Idaho Statesman reported that Bergdahl's parents and sister watched the event live on local television. The family has kept a low profile since the news of Bergdahl's capture. However, a family friend read a statement from Bergdahl's parents.
"As our emotions settle to a slow-burning desire for Bowe's return, let us pledge to one another our mutual acts of love and kindness," Gloria Gunter read. "And to Bowe, our only son, know that we love you and that people around the world are praying for your safe return to our arms."
"Bowe, I think you'd smile to see how many people love you," Bowe's sister Sky Bergdahl wrote.
The young soldier garnered worldwide attention after he appeared in a video released by the Taliban on July 18. However, the circumstances of his capture are still unclear.
Bergdahl was serving at a base in Afghanistan near the Pakistan border in an area known to be a Taliban stronghold.
President Obama has said the military is doing everything it can to rescue Bergdahl.