SARPY COUNTY, Neb. (KMTV) — Thirty-seven years after the murder of two young boys, Sarpy County will be honoring the victims with a memorial. On Tuesday the Sarpy County Commissioners approved a resolution, recognizing the Crime Victim’s Memorial for Danny Joe Eberle and Christopher Walder.
In September of 1983, 13-year-old Danny Joe Eberle went missing while working on his newspaper route in Bellevue. A few days later his body was found only four miles away.
Months later, 12-year-old Christopher Walden was abducted on his way to school. On the day, his mother let him walk just the last block to school by himself. He was later found in the same condition as Eberle.
Sarpy County Sheriff Jeff Davis says the community lost a bit of innocence during this time.
“Parents hovered around their children when they were outside, if they even let them outside at all," Davis recalled. "It changed everything.”
Eventually the man responsible for the boys deaths was found, and in 1996 he was put to death for the heinous crimes.
In the years since, the case and the two boys have faded from the community’s memory. That’s why the Sheriff’s Office, in partnership with Leadership Sarpy, is creating the memorial they hope will be a tribute to all victims of crime in Sarpy County.
“Our kind of working idea is a statue of the boys, and something else that would represent all the other victims," said Jordan Runnels who was representing Leadership Sarpy. "Because that’s what this is about, not just the boys, but all victims of crime.”
Sarpy County has just experienced another tragedy with the shooting that occurred at the Sonic in Bellevue on Saturday night. Davis says though a suspect has been apprehended, the incident will have a lasting effect on the victim’s, their families and those that witnessed the event.
That’s why he believes now is the right time to create this memorial.
“They’ll never forget that, so we shouldn’t forget that this happened and effects everybody," Davis said.
The project is still in its infancy, but those who want to contribute to the project can do so, by going to midlandscommunity.org and search for the Sarpy county sheriff’s office under the donate tab.