CHARLESTON, W.Va. - The family of Melanie Metheny has never given up hope of learning what happened to her six years ago.
They don't want everyone else to forget, either.
The family will have a fundraiser Saturday at Coonskin Park to mark the seventh anniversary of Metheny's disappearance. The 21-year-old mother of three dropped her children off at daycare on July 19, 2006, but what happened to her after that has remained a mystery.
"We do still have hope," said Sandra Metheny of Belle, Melanie's grandmother.
She and Melanie's mother, Debbie Daniels of Fredericksburg, Va., planned the activities at Coonskin that will mark the beginning of an annual event to raise money for one of her favorite things -- animals.
According to the family, Melanie loved animals from a young age and had a great desire to help any animal in need.
Melanie's HOPE -- which stands for Help Our Pets Endure -- will benefit local animal organizations.
"We aren't sure yet what the money will go to," Daniels said. "We've been taking applications by email, and I'm coming in Thursday. On Friday I'll meet with some groups."
The fundraiser will be from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Coonskin's Columbia Shelter. The family has planned plenty of kid-friendly activities that they hope will generate the fund's first income.
"We'll have little carnival games, a face painter, raffles, food and music," Daniels said. "These are little things we've planned ourselves, like a bean bag toss, duckies in a pool -- it will be like 25 cents a ticket.
"We're hoping it will be fun," she said. "This is our first time, and we're hoping to do it each year. We put quite a bit of money into it so far this year, and we think each year it will get better."