Search, fundraiser for missing 20-year-old Heather Elvis
Sun, 12 Jan 2014 00:55:54 GMT —
On Saturday, dozens of cars and horse trailers lined the heavily wooded area around Ronald McNair Blvd. and Dick Scobee Rd., just off highway 501 in Myrtle Beach.
Several volunteer groups helped search for missing 20-year-old Heather Elvis both in water and on land.
According to the Founder of the CUE Center for Missing Persons Monica Caison, these groups were expected to cover around 300 acres of land from 9 a.m. until sun down on Saturday.
Dwayne Baker led one of the groups. His 19-year-old son went missing in 2007. Two years later, his son's body was recovered.
Since then, Baker has helped out with several missing person searches.
"I come out here because I know what these parents are going through. As a parent myself, of one, no one really understands until they've been there. I just give back to the CUE Center and the families the best way I can," Baker said.
Baker also said one of the best ways to give back is just by being out there, because every inch of ground covered, means more progress made.
"It's a process of elimination is what we are doing. You don't want to find nobody like this. But if you clear the area, you know they are not there. And it keeps your hope alive that they're still out here doing ok," Baker said.
Caison said the numbers of volunteers have dwindled since last week but said it was to be expected.
"Always in the onset of accepting volunteers, you'll get a lot of people that will come out and realize, you know, this is not something that they can do either physically or emotionally. But, now I feel like we have a good crew here that is showing up time and time again," Caison said.
Across the city, The First Baptist Church of Myrtle Beach held an Italian pasta dinner on Saturday to raise money for these searches to continue, with help from the Olive Garden Italian Restaurant.
The Elvis family belongs to the church and Senior Pastor Bruce Crawford said he wants to support the family in any when they can.
This fundraiser was a continuation of the First Baptist Church's efforts. The church has also been providing meals to those helping to search for Heather.
Organizers said they hope to raise between $2,000-$5,000 from this event.