Last updated 8/19/2020 at 12:42pm
Hundreds of people tuned in to the online memorial service for Gannon Stauch held at Restoration Church in Fountain on Friday morning.
Gannon, the 11-year-old boy whose body was found several weeks after he was reported missing from his Lorson Ranch home, was remembered by friends and family as funny, protective, loyal and loving.
Chris Lancaster, who met Gannon while working in children's ministry at Restoration, said Gannon was full of energy, funny and had an amazing smile.
"He had a huge heart and a great sense of right and wrong," Lancaster said, adding Gannon was fiercely protective of his little sister, Laina.
He said Gannon has left his mark on so many people and touched countless lives.
"There is no doubt in my mind that Gannon was a divine appointment for all of us," Lancaster said.
Gannon's grandmother recalled how the boy showed extreme resilience from his very first day of life, fighting for survival after being born prematurely. But his best attribute was his affection for those around him, she said.
"Above all Gannon understood how to love" - his God and his church family and all of his relatives. "His love was visible, palpable and dynamic."
Several people spoke about missing Gannon here on earth but emphasized the hope they have of seeing him again one day.
Al Stauch, Gannon's father, emotionally explained that Gannon left behind a legacy of unity in the community. He said he received many stories from classmates and friends illustrating the extent of his influence, which touched him deeply. His proudest moments as a dad were watching Gannon's interactions with his little sister, Laina.
Much of his message was advice to Laina as she grapples with this loss throughout her life.
The memorial service remains available to watch on the Restoration Church Facebook page.