Tree planted in honor of allegedly kidnapped Tennessee teen

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation(COLUMBIA, Tenn.) -- Elizabeth Thomas may still be out of sight, but she's not out of mind.

A tree was planted Wednesday in a Columbia, Tennessee, park in honor of the 15-year-old, who was allegedly kidnapped three weeks ago by her former teacher, Tad Cummins, 50.

So far, there's only been one confirmed sighting of the pair: At a Wal-Mart in Oklahoma City on March 15, two days after they vanished.

The tree planting ceremony at Riverwalk Park was pegged to Victim's Rights Week, which is sponsored by Tennessee's Department of Corrections and Board of Parole.

The ceremony was attended by Elizabeth's family and representatives from the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, reported ABC affiliate WKRN-TV.

Elizabeth's father, Anthony Thomas, told WKRN he has a message for his daughter: "I want to tell her, Elizabeth, that man may be telling you that nobody's looking for you, or he may even be telling you that nobody wants you home. Don't listen to that. Everything he said to all the kids, not just you, has been a lie. He’s nothing but a liar. We all want you home. We all need you home."

Thomas also had a message for Cummins: "I would like to just urge Tad Cummins, I know you’re keeping up with all this and you're filtering. You're not letting her see how much people out here love her. You're depriving her of that. It would make better sense for you to turn yourself in to law enforcement. If you turn yourself in, there are laws that will guarantee your general safety."

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