Do you use a cloud service where you back up your messages? If so, check there. Verizon Cloud backs up messages, but you would have had to set it to automatically back up.
I'm sorry to learn this message thread was deleted, bluemerald. Have you previously backed up your content with iTunes or iCloud? If so, was this done when the thread was still on your phone? If this was the case you can restore your backed up content and the message thread will reload. https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT201418
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The problem is I never backed anything up. I was hoping that there was a possibility that since Verizon is my carrier there would be a way to get the messages back because I read that some carriers keep a record of all the messages that go through.
They do because the courts force them to and needs a court order to access it. Verizon lower end working have no access to those systems(could cause privacy issues due to high churn rates). So you will be hard press to get them form ANY carrier.