A Houston-area sculptor was so shaken by the death of 4-year-old Maleah Davis that she decided to craft a statue in the young girl’s image, not only to remember her but all of the children who have been taken from the world too soon.

“It’s just something that touched my soul,” Shirley Scarpetta told CNN. “…It was something I couldn’t get it out of my mind.”

A private donor reportedly commissioned the piece, giving Scarpetta the opportunity to get to work. She completed the base of the sculpture in only one day.

Maleah was reported missing on April 30, sparking a widespread search for the 4-year-old who had known health issues. Ultimately, on May 31 her body was found discarded on the side of a road near Hope, Ark. Local activist Quanell X told authorities that her stepfather, Derion Vence, confessed that Maleah had died and he had dumped her body.

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Scarpetta told CNN that as a mother herself, the sculpture was something she was moved to do.

“She won’t be forgotten,” the sculptor told Click2Houston. “I just feel really bad for their family and I only hope that they can heal from this and that they’ll see the love that everyone has…they call her Houston’s Angel.”

The statue still needs to be cast in bronze. Scarpetta will be working on it for about another month. She hopes that the finished statue will be publicly displayed in Houston.

“It’s for all of us,” she said. “Our children are so vulnerable, and people need to be reminded to leave a legacy of kindness and loving one another.”

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