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'We're not giving up' | Family, friends hold vigil for Buna woman missing since October 2021

The Jasper County Sheriff's Office is asking anyone with any information to contact deputies at (409) 384-5417.

BUNA, Texas — She's been missing for months, but her family and friends refuse to give up.

Thursday night, the Buna community gathered for a night of prayer. Cristi Ruso was last seen on October 21, 2021 at the 1800 block of County Road 777 in Buna.

Her family has organized searches in Hardin and Jasper counties, and they're working closely with the Jasper County Sheriff's Office.

After six months, hope is what keeps them going.

"You don't give up hope,” Debbie Wilson said. “I'm still waiting on a phone call. She would call me every week, and that hadn't happened in six months."

Wilson is the aunt of Ruso who went missing back in October.

Since then, her family has done everything they could to bring Ruso home.

"We're not giving up. We're not giving up until we get some answers," said aunt Debora Williams.

They've organized searches, and even raised a reward fund hoping for a lead that will guide them in the right direction.

"I'm just overwhelmed with how this community has come together,” Williams said. “And the money that's been raised for reward, leading to you know, finding Cristi, appreciate all the people and hopefully you know, we'll get some answers soon from our law enforcement."

What started out as a $500 reward in October, is now an $11,400 reward with the help of community donations.

RELATED: Jasper, Hardin county officials still searching for woman missing since October of 2021

RELATED: Reward raised for Buna woman Cristi Ruso, missing since October 2021

Jasper County Sheriff's Deputy Scotty Duncan still encourages people to come forward with any information they might have.

"We're following every lead. Any type of credible information that anybody might have, contact the sheriff. We're turning over every rock and doing everything we can,” Duncan said.

Until then, Cristi's family said they're holding on to hope and prayers from their community.

"The prayers from everybody,” Wilson said. “I don't think we would be where we're at now. Because I mean, the prayers have really helped a lot and we do appreciate it."

The Jasper County Sheriff's Office is asking anyone with any information to contact deputies at (409) 384-5417.

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