Scared Monkeys Missing Persons Site

How Can You Help Families of Missing Persons? Ask Sunny in TX; She helped find Jesse Wayne Steel, Jr.

JESSE WAYNE STEEL, Jr had been missing since 10/26/05 in Texas. He is a 15 year old special needs teen who was last seen at home. Enter Texas Equusearch and the many inspired volunteers to help in the search for Jesse Wayne Steel, Jr.

The great news is that Scared Monkeys received an email from Joe Huston notifying us that Jessee was found safe and sound Saturday. We also received more information from one of the volunteers who took time out of her life to help find Jesse. If you ever want to know what one can do to help the many families in need who are missing their loved ones? Volunteer to help. No words can describe the thanks that families have and the rewarding feeling it provides to all when one sacrifices for people that have never met. The following is a story from one of out Scared Monkey members describing her first search ever. Congratulations Sunny in TX, we are all proud of your sacrifice to help others. Hear her story in her own words.

I sent in my volunteer membership application to TES a couple months ago. On Friday I was called to assist in a search for a missing 15 year old boy. He had been missing since just after school on Wednesday. He is 15 and has some learning disabilities. I had no idea what to expect so ….. I dressed in jeans, sneakers, a tee shirt and a long sleeve jeans shirt ….. took my water bottles and headed out at 7:30 Saturday morning.

I arrived and much to my surprise Joe Huston was the person in charge of this search/rescue operation…..a man we all know and have great respect for. And my respect has risen even higher after having worked with him. He is a kind, sincere, friendly, warm and a very focused and dedicated man.

All the TES people … (all volunteers) are fantastic. You immediately feel you are part of a very loving family. Each of them were warm, friendly caring and FOCUSED people.
After filling out my paper work .. ( this is done with each search you assist in) and meeting the other volunteers… we wait for instructions. Joe and others were looking at aerial maps, consulting with family members and plotting the search.

About 9AM we were gathered together and explained the initial search would begin in the WOODS! Oh my!! I had been looking at the woods thinking I am sure not gonna be going in there! All the sudden …. this voice screamed in my soul …. OH YES YOU ARE! I thought I had been possessed by a demon!! Let me briefly explain…I am deathly afraid of snakes…even the rubber kind……terrified…can’t even look at the on the TV…. It is explained we will be walking a grid type pattern, each searcher about 10 feet apart from the person on the right and left of you..once we reach our destination ( a creek) we would pivot around the point person on the far left of us and then walk back to the road. We would continue to do this until this area was cleared unless we found ‘something’. I am thinking no way can I walk into those woods…just no way…why would I even want to walk in these woods?? Suddenly one of the volunteer’s says, “well at least we shouldn’t have to worry TOO MUCH about SNAKES as it was a very cool morning and they SHOULD not be out.” I was praying, Oh I hope to God the snakes know that bit of information!!! At that point I didn’t think I could go on. I was going to have to tell them I couldn’t do it …. suddenly it became very clear…. there was a lost child……perhaps hurt, in those woods… food, water or warm clothing…..that demon was changed into an angel with that thought… something inside me clicked and I knew I WAS going to walk into those woods!!

We took our places and began walking….keeping our lines as straight as possible…right into the woods…..within 10 feet it was so dense it was nearly impossible to see the person on your right or left… of the instructions we were given was to make sure you could see or at the very least hear them at all times….the safety of the searchers are paramont…..the spiny, thorny vines were tearing into our faces, tearing into our arms and right through our jeans..sticking in our hair and heads……but we kept on going….deeper and deeper….one of the experienced TES volunteers brought a machete and she walked ahead of us trying to cut a path….finally we reach the creek…..a head check is done there and several times throughout the search and we begin the pivot turn.

When we are turned and everyone is in place, we start the process again…..often the growth was so dense the machete couldn’t bring it down…we had to back track, find other routes over and over again. We slid down 20 ft embankment on our butts, walked through creeks up to our mid calves, climbed UP the creek banks, ran into a swarm of bees, heard a pack of wild coyotes, saw and heard wild cats and rabbits scurrying out of the underbrush…..scaring the beejeesus out of us (me). Hour after hour we walked, crawled, and inched our way…. swatting mosquitoes, crawling over barbed wire, cutting and sliding our way through this patch of God’s wild country. All the while praying…if this child is out here let us find him alive. It was so easy to become disoriented very quickly. However, TES has that covered…as I said….keep the person on both your right and left in sight preferably, but most definitely in hearing distance. Often times that person could be just feet away…but because of the density of the growth….invisible.

After a lunch break (donated by McDonald’s) we regrouped and started out again…no one complained, no one treated you like a novice, when you arrived you were immediately part of the TES family.

After completing that search area….we regrouped and the command post moved to another area…… as did the search. Same pattern back and forth until every inch was covered. The point persons and command center kept in constant contact via radio and/or cell phone. They plot and mark the search area very carefully.
At 5PM…I was tired….. and my feet were killing me after walking for nearly 6 hours in wet sneakers and socks. It was time for me to leave…..only to return Sunday morning at 9AM. Everyone kept telling the new volunteers what a good job they were doing… made one feel like I CAN DO THIS.

I was tired but ready to tackle Sunday……and knew I would not have to talk myself into going into the woods again…..not if a child’s life might be at stake. Would I do it again….in a heart beat. I have already started getting my ‘ready’ kit together…..and when TES calls I’ll be ready to go where ever they need me and do what ever they need me to. Believe me….if I could walk in those woods….I can do anything!!!

TES goes all over the world…I was told they have 10 searches going on as of yesterday.
So please friends…support TES, volunteer if you can. We can all do something to help…the applications are on line. Send them a check….they need the donations. They do what they do cause they care…..remember they have been in Aruba, New Orleans and in Indonesia after the Tsunami……and right here in Houston…looking for a young boy…..they could be in your home town tomorrow…or the week after
The was found last night…a woman recognized him from the hundreds of poster that volunteers went out and put up…..he is home safe with his family. Let us do every thing we can to help other children/people/families….and thank God every day the lost one isn’t one of ours.

It’s not glamorous…. burrs in your hair, scratched, bitten and dirty in places you shouldn’t be….feet hurting, legs feeling like there are weights attached……..but you will go to sleep at night…dead tired…knowing…today….you did everything you could to help save a life.

Was it worth it!! You betcha. I am proud to be a TES volunteer.
Sunnyin TX

October 31st, 2005 at 12:57am Posted by | Found Alive, Missing, Missing Teen, Search and Rescue, Texas Equusearch | no comments

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