Kidnapping victim Hannah Anderson, 16, attended a fundraiser Thursday for her family near San Diego where her father said she was "doing good day by day."
The fundraiser at a Boll Weevil restaurant in Lakeside is meant to help the Anderson family as they come to grips with Hannah’s kidnapping. Her father, Brett Anderson, spoke briefly to the media there and thanked the community for all of the support.
"Thank you all for coming. This is a small community that we're a part of, and the community came together and put on this great fundraiser for Hannah and her future and healing," said Brett. "This is how Lakeside rolls."
Hannah Anderson did not address the media.
The restaurant, located at 9741 Winter Gardens Blvd., just off of Hwy. 67, is donating 20 percent of its proceeds from 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. to the Anderson family, and is also holding a raffle from 5 p.m. until 9 p.m.
Brett said he has been in touch with the horseback riders that spotted Hannah and her suspected kidnapper James DiMaggio in the Idaho backcountry on Aug. 7, ultimately leading law enforcement officials to the pair.
"I have talked directly with the horsemen, and that went very well, and gave them our thanks and our love and gratitude. It was a wonderful thing. It was a chance encounter, but it did save my daughter’s life," he said.
Brett said Hannah was attending the fundraiser at the restaurant along with her family members and friends and was "happy to be there."
"Other than that, Hannah sends her love. She’s doing good day by day. We’ll just keep moving forward from here," Brett continued.
He said the money raised at the event would help cover expenses for Hannah's future.
"We're just looking for her future and to get her settled," he said. "We have a lot of expenses in front of us. Like I said, I'm not a rich man by any means. We’ll probably end up donating some of the money if there's extra to exploited children."
After his brief statement, Brett went back inside the restaurant.
DiMaggio, who was killed during Hannah’s rescue, is also a suspect in the deaths of Hannah’s mother, Christina Anderson, 44, and 8-year-old brother, Ethan Anderson, whose charred remains were found on a burned out property in Boulevard on August 4, according to investigators.
Hannah’s kidnapping and subsequent rescue hit close to home for the woman behind Thursday's fundraiser, Boll Weevil Manager, Brigitte Pinkham.
Pinkham's daughter, also 16, attends the same school as Hannah, El Captan High School, where the two are acquaintances.
“I can’t imagine the pain the family is going through,” Pinkham said. “With Hannah going missing and the deaths of Christina and Ethan, my heart just goes out to them. I just wanted to do something to help.”