BALTIMORE (WJZ) — A promising young life was cut short.  A showgirl from Maryland was brutally murdered in Las Vegas.  Her family and friends gathered to honor her memory Monday night.

Kelly McPherson attended the emotional vigil.

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A Maryland woman who was pursuing her dream to dance in Las Vegas was found strangled, dismembered and covered in cement in a Vegas home.  Family and friends waited for weeks to find out what had happened to Debbie Flores-Narvaez after she disappeared in mid-December.

“We were extremely hopeful that Debbie would be found alive.  Not in our wildest dreams would we think that this would be the end,” said Michael Ruth.

For the first time, Old Mill High School classmates gathered to remember their fun-loving friend.

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“Nothing would hold her back.  Nothing would discourage her.  It didn’t matter what it was, if she believed that she could do it, she would do it,” a friend said.

Her ex-boyfriend, Jason Griffith—also a Vegas performer—is now charged with her murder.  He has been accused of abusing her in the past. 

A group of mourners in Maryland touched upon the need to prevent this violence for other women.

“We don’t need any of you young, beautiful women to end up the way she did.  It’s not right.  It has to stop,” a friend  said.

Her only sibling Celeste says  now her next step is to make sure justice is served in her sister’s murder.

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Friends in Las Vegas are putting together a benefit show for next week.