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Investigators scope river where girl found

STEWARTSTOWN, N.H. -- Investigators have returned to the river where the body of an 11-year-old New Hampshire girl was recovered.

Several police cars and a police evidence van arrived yesterday evening at the Connecticut River near the dam where divers found the body of Celina Cass.

A crime scene technician says authorities are doing computer-aided diagramming to give them a precise electronic image of the area.

The fifth-grader was missing for nearly a week. Her body was found Monday in the river about a quarter-mile from her home in Stewartstown, a community of 800 residents.

As authorities tried to determine how Cass wound up dead in a river near her house, her neighbors considered canceling their annual children's fair.

Instead, they decided to go forward and to dedicate the weekend event to the memory of her.

State police and the town board of selectmen recommended the community hold the Stewartstown Days event despite the girl's unexplained death.

"It's still a scary place for our children. They need something that's on a little happier note for them," Patricia Grover, who is on the two-day event's organizing committee, told The Associated Press.

Celina was reported missing on July 26. Her body was recovered Monday near a hydroelectric dam in the Connecticut River.

Authorities described the girl's death as suspicious pending the outcome of an autopsy.

The girl's death was a bitter blow for residents in this town of 800 people near the Canadian border.

"You had that little bit of hope and when that went, it's really a kick in the gut," said Shannon Towle, at Towle's Minimart in Stewartstown.

Her immediate family declined to comment.

"Right now the family is in mourning. Everybody's shook up real bad right now," said Walter Laro, Celina's grandfather.

Celina's stepfather, Wendell Noyes, stopped by Towle's convenience store yesterday, a day after he was reportedly hospitalized.

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