Missing Person Bleg [Updated – Found!]

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Jonathan McLeod

Jonathan McLeod is a writer living in Ottawa, Ontario. (That means Canada.) He spends too much time following local politics and writing about zoning issues. Follow him on Twitter.

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25 Responses

  1. Avatar Patrick Cahalan says:

    Pictures. Facebook, Twitter.Report

  2. Avatar Jaybird says:

    Call a local newscast, maybe. Pictures of kids might make it a story worth running with if they need to fill a minute or two on the local broadcast…Report

  3. Avatar Burt Likko says:

    This is a very alarming and distressing thing to read, even so far away as I am. Best of luck to the family and all of our best wishes for the man’s safe and speedy return!

    I’m told that most modern cell phones possess GPS technology that can be activated and traced in emergencies, using residual battery power by the service provider. I don’t know firsthand if this is true, or if it would be helpful in this family’s situation if it is.

    Banks and credit card companies should be contacted to see if there have been any recent transactions the rest of the family cannot account for. Hospitals and police stations and points of transit like airports should be canvassed by phone. That’s probably been done already, though. I don’t know how effective instant media like Twitter might be, but a photograph of the man would surely be helpful if it is used.

    Again, the best of luck to your friends, in a very scary situation; I hope the missing man is found soon and safe.Report

    • Avatar Mike Dwyer in reply to Burt Likko says:

      Burt nails it. Cell phone and bank trace.Report

    • Avatar Kazzy in reply to Burt Likko says:

      My crappy old cell phone has location services, with the options being “On” or “911(Emergency) Only”. Which means it is either on or it is on if there is indeed an emergency. I’d venture to guess newer phones have only improved on this feature.

      If they have an iPhone or iPad and “Find My Device” is turned on, they can track him from a synced Apple device, no need to involve a service provider. Best of luck to your friend.Report

  4. Thanks for the suggestions, everyone. I’ve sent the link to this post to my wife to send on to her friend. I’ll offer an update if and when I get one.Report

  5. Avatar Kimmi says:

    Okay, sounds like everybody else got the easy things:
    Barring abnormalities, assume this was an accident or misfortune.

    Start checking normal routes — my husband was unconscious in Schenley Park overnight once, fell down and didn’t wake up till the next morning. Nobody noticed, cause nobody’s in the park.

    Contact friends, start looking for abnormalities. If nothing else, it’ll give ya something to do.

    If he’s in the actual city, i wouldn’t worry too much about murder/kidnapping… if he’s well outside (or might have been travelling through parts distant) — well, does he know enough to not stop for a vehicle by the side of the road? (guys sometimes think they’re Superman).Report

  6. Avatar Dan Miller says:

    Try posting on http://www.reddit.com/r/pittsburgh. It’s worth a shot and only takes a few minutes.Report

  7. Avatar darlene says:

    Thank you, all. I’ve passed on your suggestions to the acquaintance of mine. We’re all trying to remain sanguine, but…Report

  8. Avatar DRS says:

    Fire Department – did they treat anyone for injury who didn’t require hospitalization?Report

  9. Avatar DRS says:

    Also: public transit authority. Photos for posting on transit intraweb for drivers and station attendents (does Pittsburgh have a subway?). Also major taxi companies, especially the big ones in town. Same logic. You might get lucky.Report

  10. Avatar Kazzy says:

    You might also consider calling the central reservation lines of major hotels. They can likely check system-wide if he might be at one of them.Report

  11. Avatar Ramblin' Rod says:

    Post a picture here or somewhere I can access. I’m driving from Minnesota to Virginia over the weekend and going right through Pittsburg (past actually, on the Turnpike). Astronomical shot, but …Report

  12. Avatar darlene says:

    Found! No idea what kept him away from home for nearly 24 hours, and I can’t imagine what his wife is going to do to him, but he’s found. *sigh of relief*Report

    • Avatar Ramblin' Rod in reply to darlene says:

      I suspect there’s a fairly interesting story here that none of us has any business asking about.Report

      • Avatar Kimmi in reply to Ramblin' Rod says:

        Here’s to hoping it’s something amusing.
        Last “what happened to him???” I heard about was some CS student barricading himself in his room… for a couple of days. Poor bastard’s friends thought he had committed suicide and ended up calling campus police.Report

        • Avatar Burt Likko in reply to Kimmi says:

          The story about Richard Harris goes like this: As a younger actor, he often had late nights. So one day he went out for a pack of cigarettes and then didn’t come home for twenty-six weeks. As you do.

          Realizing that he’d put himself in a terribly awkward situation, he knew he’d have to come up with something to take the initiative back in that first conversation. So he opens the door and there’s the wife, seeing him for the first time in a little bit more than half a year, and she is understandably astonished.

          “Richard! Where have you been?”

          “Why didn’t you pay the f[ish]ing ransom?”

          I don’t know if the story is true, of course. But in a way, it ought to be.Report

    • Avatar Burt Likko in reply to darlene says:

      This is great! Thanks for letting us all breathe a sigh of relief.Report

  13. Avatar Kazzy says:

    I think it says something very special about this place that Jonathan thought to bring this here.Report