DECATUR, Texas (KXAN) — The mother of Athena Strand spoke publicly Thursday morning for the first time since the 7-year-old Texas girl’s death.

Maitlyn Gandy told reporters her daughter’s abduction happened on Nov. 30 when a contract FedEx driver delivered a package containing a Christmas present for the girl to her father’s home in Paradise, Texas. Gandy shared this information while standing next to the opened package, which contained several Barbie dolls meant for Strand.

“Athena was robbed of the opportunity to grow up and be anything she wanted to be,” Gandy said. “In this present, ordered out of innocence and love, is one she will never receive.”

Wise County deputies found Strand’s body on Friday after she disappeared, and they arrested Tanner Horner, 31, in connection with her death. Horner is now facing charges of capital murder and aggravated kidnapping. Investigators said they believe Horner abducted her while he was in the area delivering packages.

Earlier this week, several school districts throughout the state encouraged their students and staff members to wear Strand’s favorite color pink to honor her. Gandy thanked the community for their support since Strand’s disappearance.

“I want everyone to know Athena. She was an amazing little girl who loved dancing, singing and all animals — dogs, cats, horses, lizards and chinchillas,” Gandy said. “She also loved school and all her friends in the first grade who are now struggling with her senseless murder.”

She said she’d now like to see better candidate screening and hiring processes put into place “so that monsters wearing delivery uniforms won’t show up on our children’s doorsteps.” Gandy’s attorney, Benson Varghese, said during Thursday’s news conference he’s now conducting a “thorough investigation” of his own into FedEx and the contractor that hired the suspected killer.

“We will uncover every person who is responsible through their actions or inactions for the tragedy that happened,” Varghese said.

The family’s attorney is asking anyone who knew the suspect or worked for the suspect’s employer to contact his law office and share information that may help with his investigation.

Gandy asked for other parents to hug their children tighter because her daughter will not be there now to celebrate the 7-year-old’s favorite holiday, Christmas.

“I know that Athena’s death will not be in vain,” Gandy said. “I will spend the rest of my life fighting for her so that no other family will endure such unbearable pain and grief.”