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Community gathers in support of Michael Vaughan's family

About 100 people held candles and stood in solidarity at Fruitland Community Park Wednesday evening. Michael went missing from his neighborhood in July 2021.

BOISE, Idaho — The Fruitland community came together Wednesday evening for a prayer circle in support of Michael Vaughan and his family.

About 100 people held candles and stood in solidarity at Fruitland Community Park. Michael went missing from his Fruitland neighborhood in July 2021.

Police Chief J.D. Huff told KTVB on Wednesday crews finished digging up the backyard of a house where they believe Michael’s remains were buried. That house is just four minutes away from the Vaughan’s home.  

Huff did not release the results of their search. 

“Michael’s coming home,” his mom Brandi Neal said. “We haven’t given up hope, and we won’t give up hope.”

Organizer Brooke Curtiss said the prayer circle allowed people the space and time to show their support for the family. She wanted to show the world that people are better together than apart.

“I think putting that in a verbal sense really brings a community closer together,” Curtiss said.

Neal said she is overwhelmed with love.

“The love and the support and the kindness that everyone has continuously shown Michael and our entire family this entire time – to come out in the freezing cold and show how strong we are as a community, it’s amazing," Neal said.

Scott Seeberger drove from Boise to the prayer circle. He said, “it’s important for the community to wrap their arms around this family and show them that they’re loved and that they’re cared about.”

Police arrested Sarah Wondra on a charge of failure to report a death in connection to Michael’s case earlier this month. Wondra lives in the house crews dug up.

Wondra's status conference was rescheduled for Dec. 23 because a judge ruled she is mentally unfit to assist in her own defense and she needs treatment. 

It is going to be at least another week before we know what police found at the home they searched. Chief Huff said they plan to hold a news conference on either Nov. 30 or Dec. 1.  

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