'She will remember her mom and dad'

At a time when most parents of small children can't wait for Christmas, Kassidy Miller's Gardnerville Ranchos family waits for something else.

A hearing is scheduled this month to learn the charges against the woman accused of killing Kassidy's parents " Sgt. Timothy and Sgt. Randi Miller " and kidnapping her on March 1.

Timothy Miller was a 1998 graduate of Douglas High School.

Kassidy's grandmother, Tami Gray, said the hearing has been postponed a few times at the request of the defense.

Fellow soldier, 23-year-old Spec. Ivette Davila faces murder and kidnapping charges in a military court. Davila is awaiting an Article 32 hearing, which will determine the exact charges before a court martial is convened.

The Army wants the family and Kassidy to attend the hearing. It will be the first time the family has confronted Davila.

The Grays, who live in the Gardnerville Ranchos, have custody of the little girl.

In the intervening nine months, Kassidy has grown from a baby to a toddler.

She likes to dance, sometimes wiggling, other times spinning in circles.

In the presence of strangers she'll hide her face, like any other little girl. And sometimes she laughs.

Kassidy is 15 months old now, still too young to understand what happened to her parents.

But Gray said she fears that if the proceedings against Davila continue too long, that Kassidy may come to realize what's happening and why.

For now, Kassidy doesn't show any outward sign of what happened to her.

"She was very happy as a baby," Gray said. "We've got videos of her dad talking to her and she's talking back to him. During the first six months, her mom and dad spent a lot of time with her and it shows."

But that doesn't mean the events of March 1 have been erased from Kassidy's memory.

"She sometimes has nightmares," Gray said. "With bad dreams, she stops crying when you pick her up. But she keeps crying when she has a nightmare. She doesn't realize what she remembers."

Gray operates a day care for a handful of other children.

"I want to keep her with kids," she said. "She has a best friend who's her age named Molly. They go everywhere together."

Kassidy is talking and attends preschool. As her grandmother talks, she sings part of the "The Itsy Bitsy Spider." She's mastered "down came the rain."

A picture of her parents in Army uniforms sits in her room.

"She will remember her mom and dad," Gray said. "She visits her mom and dad at the cemetery. We went on her dad's birthday and let 28 balloons go, because that was how old he would have been. One had a note attached to it. She said she was sending it to them in Heaven."

Seventy-five people attended Kassidy's first birthday in August.

"She has a lot of people who love her around the world," Gray said, "all of her family and her military family."

The crime has changed the way Gray looks at things.

"At night, sometimes I'm lying there and I have to get up and check to see if the doors are locked because I think someone will come in and shoot us, and kidnap Kassidy," she said. "I never had thoughts like that before this happened."

And there are still the rough spots.

"She looks so much like her father did at that age," Gray said. "Some days I can talk about it. Others I can't look at a picture of them without crying."


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