Shannan Gilbert's kin gather at Oak Beach
A month after Shannan Gilbert's remains were found, her family and friends gathered Saturday for a memorial at Oak Beach near the marsh where she was last seen alive.
For the first time, Gilbert's mother and sister visited the area where investigators found her body.
Gilbert, 24, who worked as a prostitute, disappeared in May 2010. The hunt for her led to the discovery that bodies of sex workers were being dumped around Gilgo Beach and that perhaps a serial killer or killers were at work.
Suffolk County police investigators, though, theorize Gilbert drowned accidentally in the marsh after she was last seen running from a client's home nearby.
Police said upon discovering her body Dec. 13 that Gilbert appeared to have stumbled up to three-fourths of a mile on foot into the bramble and may have become lost or "disoriented" in the darkness while seeking a path to the Robert Moses Causeway, the road off the barrier island.
Gilbert's mother, Mari, however, said before Saturday's vigil that her daughter may have been a victim of the same killer or killers responsible for 10 other victims found along Ocean Parkway. Mari Gilbert last month called for the Justice Department to take over the investigation into the deaths of her daughter and the others.