FBC brings community together to pray for family of missing woman

Published 7:37 pm Sunday, July 7, 2019

Family and friends of Kelsey Starling gathered to pray Sunday night three days after the Troy woman went missing following a boating collision on Smith Lake near Birmingham.

“Already there’s been an outpouring of love and support from visits to phone calls and texts,” said Chris Strube, who led the service. “Thank you all for coming tonight to pray.”

More than 100 people came to the main sanctuary of First Baptist Church to pray for Kelsey’s father, Alton Starling, former Troy city clerk; Megan, her sister; all of the Starling family and friends as well as the families and friends of others involved in the boat wreck; and for investigators who are still searching for Kelsey.

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“Pray for Alton specifically for strength, physically and spiritually, and wisdom as he continues to be a father to Megan,” Strube said. “Pray for God’s peace to guard his heart and root itself.”

“And pray for Megan, who has already had to endure so much more than anybody should have to endure.”

Payton Rose, one of Kelsey’s best friends and one of the other people on the boat Thursday night, said they’re praying for a miracle.

“We miss her and want her home,” Rose said. “The crash was a scary time. Everyone else is OK, and we’re thankful for that, and hopeful.”

Rose described Kelsey as “the light to everyone’s world.”

“She just brings so much happiness to everyone,” Rose said. “You can see from tonight’s attendance she has so many friends and she means so much to so many people.”

Kelsey was a passenger in a 2012 Mastercraft wakeboard boat involved in a two-vessel crash at approximately 10 p.m. Thursday night. Four people were transported for medical treatment and the driver

William Jackson Fite, 23, of Decatur, was booked into the Winston County jail Friday on a charge of Boating Under the Influence.

The crash remains under investigation and the search for Kelsey continues.