HUNTINGTON BEACH (CBSLA.com) — A memorial was held Sunday to honor the life of a 12-year-old girl that was murdered in 1979.

The event was organized by family and friends in an effort to remember Robin Samsoe, which began at 10 a.m., located at the Huntington Beach Pier Plaza on Main Street and the Pacific Coast Highway.

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Rodney Alcala was convicted of her murder three times. He faced earlier convictions, which were twice overturned on appeal, and was sentenced to death row in 2010.

Alcala was also convicted for the murders of four other women in California, and the slayings of two Manhattan women in the 1970s.

Samsoe’s family says they find comfort in the efforts of the community to keep her memory alive.

“If people would take half of what Robin had to give, it would be a better world,” mother Marianna Connelly said.

Throughout the process of Alcala’s legal proceedings, Samsoe’s family said they had to relive their worst nightmare time and again.

“We went through three trials, and each one was worse than the last one,” Connelly said. “There is no closure, ever. This, to me, is the best thing that’s happened since Robin died.”

The city of Huntington Beach decided to immortalize Robin with a memorial plaque.

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Her family, meanwhile, hope that, in addition to remembering her, visitors and residents will see the memorial and take it as a lesson for themselves.

“You can be a good child and still be in the wrong place at the wrong time. Keep your kids close to you”

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