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Abduction Survivor Gives Message of Hope to Evansdale Community
Updated: Saturday, July 13 2013, 11:15 PM CDT
EVANSDALE (CBS 2/ FOX 28)--Offering words of comfort, Alicia Kozakiewicz stood before Drew and Heather Collins and the Evansdale community, to share her story of survival.
“He had broadcasted himself abusing me to other people online” Kozakiewicz said to a crowd of hundreds who gathered Saturday to mark the one year disappearance of Elizabeth Collins and Lyric Cook.
In 2002, Alicia was kidnapped, raped and beaten by a man she met online. She was 13.
“I figured he was going to kill me,” she said.
Abducted from her Pennsylvania home, Alicia was taken to Virginia and kept locked and chained in a basement for four days before being rescued.
“The FBI broke in the door, cut the chain from around my neck, and gave me a second chance at life,” she said.
Now, she’s using that second chance to be a pillar of strength to those who have endured similar tragedies.
“It was just important to have her here because she’s a success story,” said Heather Collins, Elizabeth mother. “She has a powerful message out there.”
That message is to never give up.
“We cannot give up on them,” Alicia said. “We can never lose hope on a missing child.”
And to lean on one another even in the darkest hour.
“We’re victims and survivors all the same,” she said.