It's been four years since the body of a newborn baby boy was found abandoned near a road in Horry County. A graveside service was held Monday to mark the anniversary of the infant's discovery.
The child, now known as Baby Boy Horry, has a resting place and a grave stone at Hillcrest Cemetary in Conway.
What the baby does not have is an identity, but that's not for a lack of dedication on the part of Horry County coroner Robert Edge.
In his 25 years in office, Edge has seen more than his share of tragedies. But few cases have touched his heart like that of the newborn baby, whose body was found in a tote bag in a spot off Meadowbrook Drive that's now marked by a faded cross and threadbare toys.
"We want to keep his memory alive as long as we can," Edge says.
Edge says police have Baby Boy Horry's DNA, but so far, have been unable to match it with anyone.
Since 2008, a good-sized crowd still shows up each year for the memorial service for the boy. Many of those who attend are members of the Rolling Thunder veterans group.
Edge knows as the years go by, memories will fade and the crowd will diminish, but he hopes the community will never forget.
"People do remember him and I think it probably weighs heavy on their hearts again that he was deserted and nobody ever wanted him."
Rev. Wayne Brown of Diversified Ministries leads the memorial service each year. Like Edge, he hopes this annual tradition will never die.
"It was a sad time for this community, but this has been a time of building love and friendship and fellowship in memory of a very special child known but to God," said Rev. Brown.
When there are so many couples who want a child but can't have one, Edge says it's a tragedy that just two miles away from a hospital, where the boy could have been dropped off alive and in good health, the child was abandoned.
"Somebody would have adopted him and gave him a great home, made some good parents for him," Edge says. "I saw him, he was a fully developed little boy, he would have made somebody a good son."
Edge believes someone out there knows Baby Boy Horry's story. He asks anyone who has that information to contact his office or Horry County Police.
Tipsters can go through a third party or use an attorney and may remain anonymous.