Sunday will mark the two-year anniversary of the disappearance of 18-year-old Christopher Virdell of Spanaway.
His family will hold a candlelight vigil at 4 p.m. at Bethel Station, 22303 Mountain Highway E. in the Spanaway area. The vigil will be open to the public.
His family says there have been no arrests or recent updates in the case from the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department.
Sheriff’s spokesman Jerry Bates said the department is actively investigating the case and following leads. Investigators have said before that they believe Virdell was killed, but declined to provide details on the status of the case because it is an ongoing investigation.
He was last seen about 10 a.m. Feb. 9, 2012, when he left a friend’s house on 223rd Street East in Spanaway to go to work. He never showed up for his shift, and his parents reported him missing when he did not come home that night.
Virdell is described as white, about 5 feet 6, 120 pounds, with brown hair and brown eyes. He was last seen wearing a bright orange hunting jacket, a black Safeway T-shirt, black pants and black sneakers with glow-in-the-dark shoelaces.
The teen was a model employee at Safeway, his parents said. He was especially proud of a letter from the company, honoring him after a customer wrote to say Virdell had gone above and beyond by offering him a motorized shopping cart when he saw he had a medical boot.
He never missed a day of work, said his father, Paul Virdell Sr.
The younger Virdell volunteered at a local farmers market to raise funds for a local youth center, where his father said he did his homework.
Melanie Virdell, his mother, said she hoped “that somebody will come forward and tell us where we can find our son’s remains, and also that some suspects will be arrested in this case and that anyone rendering criminal assistance will be charged in this case.”
Anyone with information can call Tacoma-Pierce County Crime Stoppers at 253-591-5959. Tips are anonymous and can result in a reward.Alexis Krell: 253-597-8268 alexis.krell@ thenewstribune.com thenewstribune.com/crime-news @amkrell