MANDY MATULA: Memory lives on through brother's mission - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

MANDY MATULA: Memory lives on through brother's mission

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EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. (KMSP) -

The life of Mandy Matula will continue to live on even if her laugh and smile are frozen in time.

Inside the Matula home, her brother Steven Matula presents the memorial the family has dedicated to Mandy – the athlete, the hard worker and best friend to her brother who disappeared a year ago on May 1 and was found in a shallow grave near Sartell, Minn.

“It’s gone fast and slow. I'm just glad Mandy was found before the winter because if she wasn't that would have been a long winter,” he said.

When she went missing, her community came together, searching for her each and every day,

“It was incredible everyone who went out of their own way just to help me find my sister,” Steven Matula said.

During that time, two other women were also missing, and with that in mind, Matula created Minnesota United, a group that bands together to search for missing persons.

“I figured I would try to get the whole community to come together and look for Kira, Danielle and Mandy,” he said.

Minnesota United turned into so much more. The group used its resources and wide reach to look for Anarae Schunk and Kevin Casserly, among others. Matula’s goal is to use his experience to help calm and counsel others going through the stress of a missing loved one. And it’s all purely volunteer work.

“For, me, no, money is not in the situation. I want to help people, help people get stronger emotionally and mentally,” he said.

Matula knows his sister is gone physically, but each day, he says she is with him and in the end, it’s because of her that Minnesota United exists.

“For her, she was always trying to find the positives in the smallest things. That gave me the strength to keep moving forward but to help other people because that's the way Mandy was ; she always wanted to help other people so I'm going to try to live by that and continue to help people,” he said.

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