|Investigations have so
far failed to find Madeleine McCann
candles were lit at a special event in
Leicestershire to mark 1,000 days since Madeleine McCann went missing.
Simultaneous events took place in Portugal - where
Madeleine disappeared in 2007 - mother Kate's home city of Liverpool,
and in the United States.
Plans to release 1,000 lanterns into the sky above
the McCanns' home village of Rothley were cancelled due to bad weather.
Parents Kate and Gerry McCann said the events
symbolised them never giving up.
Madeleine was three years old when she went missing
from her family's holiday apartment in Praia da Luz on 3 May 2007, while
her parents dined with friends nearby.
A statement from the couple on their
website said: "It is a symbolic way for our family, friends and
supporters to show that we have not forgotten Madeleine and will never
give up on her.
"We remember the first few days after
Madeleine was taken, watching the clock and counting every hour. "Now
we've reached 1,000 days. "It's difficult sometimes to understand how
we've been able to keep going and survive without Madeleine, especially
since nothing has changed since that terrifying first night. Madeleine
is still missing.
"Sometimes it even feels 'wrong' to be
coping. And yet if we weren't, there would be no search and no campaign
to find Madeleine and that just doesn't bear thinking about."
The service took place at the Rothley
Court Hotel and a poem, entitled The Beacon, was written for the event
by Simon Armitage.
Supporters of the McCanns packed the candlelit service