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      Alan Madden's schoolmate makes sure he is not forgotten

      Alan Madden still being honored

      More than 30 years ago, 5-year-old Alan Madden was brutally beaten to death. His mother and her boyfriend were found guilty of the crime.

      That day in January 1981, the Quincy area residents became aware that violent child abuse was present in their community.

      Chris Prewitt was in fourth grade at Washington School in Quincy when he found out about his schoolmate's death. Alan was in kindergarten at the time.

      Pruitt feels a special connection to Alan, "I kind of think of him as a brother."

      He regularly visit's Alan's gravesite at Graceland Cemetery to decorate it and make sure it is maintained.

      "I hate to see his memory lost. He has no family left here in Quincy at all so ... we kind of become his family," Prewitt said.

      Prewitt also commented that he is not the only one who visits Alan. Every year at Christmas, an unknown Good Samaritan repaints the wooden teddy bear next to his headstone.

      Prewitt believes the community made a change for the better after Alan's death and that is why it is important, "to keep his memory alive for what happened to him back in 1980."

      He says that, while Alan's death was a tragedy, people should remember, "the good changes that come with it, (such as) the DCFS following through on any kind of report of abuse."

      Many Washington School Alumni still get together to honor Alan, such as on the anniversary of his death and his birthday.

      Do you remember Alan Madden? We want to hear how you were impacted by his story in our comments field below or on our Facebook page here.