Author Topic: Just in Case You Need Some Hope Today  (Read 101370 times)


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Re: Just in Case You Need Some Hope Today
« Reply #240 on: January 22, 2017, 11:39:24 AM »
Sometimes they miraculously return in time to say goodbye.

Although it had been nearly 36 years since her disappearance, Rhena Bliss' mother refused to mourn her daughter's death. Some families of the missing go through a mourning process so they can move on. Some can't. Rhena's family couldn't. Her mother kept the same phone for four decades just in case her daughter would call.

Rhena Bliss was 29-years-old and the mother of two children when she was discharged from the Provincial Mental Hospital in Ponoka, Alta. She had all her worldly possessions packed into an antique ribbed travel trunk that was found in an apartment she rented in Edmonton in 1975.

"When a person goes missing, it's not a dramatic, traumatic event; it's a slow gnawing absence that's always there," says Rhena's younger sister Beverly Bliss who said she was close to Rhena and her sister's disappearance affected her life profoundly, including bouts of insomnia, and countless hours on the web searching for clues. "I would read the death notices, Google her name, her married name, variations of her name, all kinds of stuff....I really came to understand the importance of a funeral, of the need to say goodbye."

It would take the creation of Project KARE in the wake of the Robert Pickton mass murders to post cold cases, and then the National Centre for Missing Persons and Unidentified Remains to list missing persons, and the RCMP to post Rhena Bliss as a missing Alberta case. The post caught the attention of another sleuth, a social worker at the Cornerstone Housing for Women facility in Ottawa. The social worker made a hobby of surfing the web for clues to residents who, like Rhena, lived with mental illness and may not be aware or able to communicate their family history.  The social worker contacted RCMP Missing Persons after recognizing the online missing person's photo matched Rhena, a homeless woman that had been housed in their facility since 1995.

It took authorities a little while to get to the matter, but eventually on October 2011, the Edmonton Police called Bev to inform her that her sister had been found.

Little is known of Rhena's life for the 20 year period between 1975 and 1995, prior to her residence at Cornerstone. Due to her illness which can produce distorted and fabricated memories, it is hard to tell whether her recollections were real or imagined. But, the family was able to discern from her Medicaid card, social security card, bus pass, and bank account, that she spent significant time in Rockville, Maryland. She can also be tracked to Boston, California, Hawaii and New York. At some point, family believe she was deported to Canada and began living on the streets of Ottawa.

"Our biggest question was 'Why didn't they (authorities) find us in 1995?' If they looked her up in the missing persons, maybe we would have had 15 more years together," Bev said realizing that until recent years Canada did not share missing person's data centrally.

"I had to recognize that the illness had taken its toll, that the person I once knew wasn't coming back," Bev said of the bittersweet reunion with her sister. As it turned out, the family was only reunited for approximately five years. Rhena Bliss died of a rare form of cancer on October 16, 2016, a little shy of her 71st birthday. But, in those five years, Bev found peace in finding her sister. Rhena's children who didn't recall their mom, had a chance to meet her.

"It's not just me any more, it's us?" Bev recalled Rhena asking at the end of their the initial reunion. Rhena had some sort of peace, as well. The family moved her from Cornerstone to a long-term care facility. And, when Rhena died, they had the chance to say goodbye with a lovely Baha'i funeral.

"I wouldn't say there was closure...What we felt was gratitude that we were able to spend some time with Rhena again," said Bev. "It's a feeling I wish every family of a missing person could feel."

« Last Edit: July 09, 2017, 07:21:51 AM by Concerned »


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Re: Just in Case You Need Some Hope Today
« Reply #241 on: February 05, 2017, 12:08:52 PM »
Sometimes the system works one-by-one (even on Super Bowl Sunday)

It was a gut-feeling and a trained eye that caused Alaska Airlines Flight Attendant Shelia Fedrick to notice the 14- to 15-year-old girl that "looked like she had been through pure hell" traveling with a notably well-dressed older man.  Not to mention the flight was on its way to a final destination of Houston's William P. Hobby Airport around the time of the 2017 Super Bowl which is hosted today in Houston, Texas. Fedrick is one of an increasing number of flight attendants who volunteer and are trained to be Airline Ambassadors in recognizing human trafficking. She even testified before Congress in 2010 about witnessing women and girls flying from Moscow to the United States under the guise of becoming actresses and models were suspected of being victims of trafficking. This type of concern and testimony has helped to bring about the FAA Extension, Safety, and Security Act of 2016 which allows for training of flight attendants to spot potential trafficking victims.

Even though Super Bowl officials historically refuse to admit there is a correlation between their event and sex trafficking trade demand, statistics and law enforcement gear up (sometimes years in advance) to recognize, investigate, capture, and prosecute more cases when the event comes to their town. Some national reports even say that once the event leaves a city that hosts Super Bowl and other large sporting events, dangerous and criminal activity is left behind. The drug trade and the sex trade that flocked to address the demand often begins roots in the cities once the game is long gone.

"The Super Bowl is the greatest show on Earth, but it also has an ugly underbelly," former Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott told USA Today in 2011 who also announced they would be cracking down on the sex trade leading up to the big event with a zero-tolerance policy on human trafficking for the Super Bowl and thereafter. "It's commonly known as the single largest human trafficking incident in the United States."

"It's not so much that you become a victim at the Super Bowl, but that many victims are brought in to be used for all the men at the Super Bowl," said Stephanie Kilper, a representative for Operation Freedom Taskforce in Akron, Ohio, about the shear number of men who flock into a sporting event who also create a demand for the sex trade as they expect to pay for sex at some point in the days leading up to or after the event.

Clemmie Greenlee, a former sex trafficking victim who was abducted at the age of 12 and raped by her captors, is one of many victims who have relayed their experiences in hopes that authorities and those in various industries like the hotel, transportation and hospitality industries can do their part to deter the underground activity. She reports that when it comes to the Super Bowl, she was expected to sleep with anywhere from 25 to 50 men a day. She says there was an immense pressure to meet her traffickers' demands.

"If you don't make that number (of sex customers), you're going to dearly, dearly, severely pay for it. I mean with beatings, I mean with over and over rapings. With just straight torture," she reports. "The worst torture they put on you is when they make you watch the other girl get tortured because of your mistake."

Flight Attendant Shelia Fedrick was eager to spend two days listening to former victims relate their experiences. This helped the flight attendant to identify passengers who appear frightened, ashamed, or nervous. She now looks for people traveling with someone who doesn't appear to be a parent or relative. She looks for bruises, battery or signs of being drugged. And, she is trained to notice when the adult insists on speaking for the child.

So when Fedrick saw the greasy blonde hair girl in aisle 10 on a flight from Seattle to San Francisco, her training kicked in. She attempted to engage the man and girl in conversation, and the man became defensive. She left a note in the bathroom for the girl who wrote back "I need help." So Fedrick alerted the pilot who notified authorities who met the plane at landing. From that point on she is trained to let it go and let the authorities take it from there.

Fedrick and many others involved in the identification efforts hope that someday the special training to recognize human trafficking will become a requirement for all flight attendants.

In the meantime, we can only hope that the men and women who participate in these events, recognize the elements they are dealing with when trying to satisfy an illegal sexual urge. That they realize some of these girls and women were once abducted  and kidnapped from our own neighborhoods, worldwide in part to satisfy their urge. The victim could be their (or their neighbor's) daughter, sister, mother or friend. Do they care? And, their behavior is the catalyst to the demand that brings so much pain and torture to the victims they have sex with. Without demand, this activity would be greatly curtailed in a way that one flight attendant on the lookout is not able to do on her own.

Sometimes it takes a change in overall culture to not get to the point that people think, somehow, their urge is worth ruining the life of an innocent child and the victims wider support system of parents, family and friends.

Wouldn't it be wonderful if the authorities in charge of Super Bowl Sunday, the Olympics and all the other major sporting events that contribute to this activity would recognize and stand up against such crime. Or, the athletes and sporting organizations that qualify for play-offs publicly shame the act of paying for prostitution. Just think of how the fans of that great sport and those athletes would greatly curtail the demand of the sex trade industry.

I wonder how many other families who have a missing daughter, sister, wife or mother (son, brother, husband or father) have combed through all the dirty classifieds and online offerings year after year around Super Bowl Sunday and other major sporting events like the Olympics, looking for a trace of their missing loved one; hoping to find a needle in the haystack - their loved one alive and in need of being found and rescued?

« Last Edit: July 09, 2017, 07:17:24 AM by Concerned »


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Re: Just in Case You Need Some Hope Today
« Reply #242 on: February 05, 2017, 02:21:53 PM »
great eye opener C; and encouraging to read this.


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Re: Just in Case You Need Some Hope Today
« Reply #243 on: February 05, 2017, 05:13:57 PM »
Large gatherings of men at any sporting meeting or any other celebration where thousands of people come together would be a great place for skilled people to watch out for traffickers as you mentioned above Concerned.
We already know that STW's migrate to where they would have more work ... as happened at Fort McMurray's oil boom, and it's also noticed at other events such as our Edmonton exhibition. I never thought of traffickers and their victims at these events. I hope police have considered this.


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Re: Just in Case You Need Some Hope Today
« Reply #244 on: February 09, 2017, 03:05:12 AM »
Thanks for posting this article, Long Gone!
I read it and instantly thought this good news needed to be shared with our group.


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Re: Just in Case You Need Some Hope Today
« Reply #245 on: April 09, 2017, 12:56:27 PM »
Sometimes they just need some time to walk in the woods...

A 10-year-old boy from Raleigh North Carolina was discovered missing from school on Monday. He was last seen at 3:45 p.m. as he was leaving Pleasant Grove Elementary School. He's normally picked up by a relative after school. The search crews searched all night around the school and in the woods behind the school because a camera showed him walking into the woods from the back of school.

They couldn't find him.

But, at 5 a.m. the next morning he walked into a hotel lobby and said he was ready to go home. Could they call somebody for him?

The front desk operator noticed the boy was wearing the same clothes that was described in the missing report and asked the boy where he had been. He simply said he had been walking all night in the woods - up to two miles away.

Paramedics said he was physically fine and police returned him to his mother who was overjoyed to have her son back.

Maybe sometimes our kids need a break, a walk...a moment. Don't we wish all cases could be as such. Sometimes we think the worst, but maybe sometimes we have to take the walk a child might explore and hopefully we find them in time, or they find us, safely.

« Last Edit: July 09, 2017, 07:14:15 AM by Concerned »


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Re: Just in Case You Need Some Hope Today
« Reply #246 on: April 09, 2017, 03:05:24 PM »
Forest therapy.


Shinrin-yoku is a term that means "taking in the forest atmosphere" or "forest bathing." It was developed in Japan during the 1980s and has become a cornerstone of preventive health care and healing in Japanese medicine. Researchers primarily in Japan and South Korea have established a robust body of scientific literature on the health benefits of spending time under the canopy of a living forest. Now their research is helping to establish shinrin-yoku and forest therapy throughout the world.

The idea is simple: if a person simply visits a natural area and walks in a relaxed way there are calming, rejuvenating and restorative benefits to be achieved.
« Last Edit: April 09, 2017, 03:10:22 PM by Sap1 »


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Re: Just in Case You Need Some Hope Today
« Reply #248 on: April 16, 2017, 07:29:56 AM »
Sometimes the voices get beautifully louder....

"When my son Lee went missing he was 15. He would be 41," said Peter Boxell who has not seen his son since 1988 after he vanished from a football match in Sutton, South London. "I just want to find him."

I never thought I would be without you...

Peter is one of a UK group of determined relatives, friends and supporters of missing persons who joined together to form The Missing People Choir to sing the emotional and heartfelt song appropriately titled "I Miss You" in one of the world's largest forums, Britain's Got Talent. They are hoping for awareness, hoping to get their message across...hoping for a breakthrough...hoping.

"The choir is energizing, warming, safe, moving - beyond words," said Sarah Godwin whose son Quentin went missing from his family home in West Auckland, New Zealand, 25 years ago at the age of 18. "We can each feel our own love and sadness and pain, but we are there for each other and somehow it becomes joyful, too."

I always thought you'd be here safe with me. Maybe tomorrow I'll wake up to find you...

The group's members consists of Peter Lawrence whose 35-year-old daughter Claudia failed to show up for work as a chef in York and Rachel Edwards who is the sister of Manic Street Preachers guitarist Richey Edwards who mysteriously vanished from a London hotel in 1995 at the age of 27. Emma Cullingford, the daughter of 57-year-old Sandra Hall who went missing in 2013, but was found deceased within a month in West Sussex also performs with the group. And, there is Denise Horvath-Allan whose son Charles went missing while backpacking in Canada in 1989 at the age of 20.

There are 140,000 children that go missing in the UK every year, they say.

I will hold on until tomorrow when I will have you near. I hope.

The group has recorded two songs, "I Miss You" and "I Hope."

I Miss You
By Jim Hawkins and Simon Rhodes
Sung by The Missing People Choir


I Hope
By Ash Alexander and Jim Hawkins
Sung by The Missing People Choir
I'm here waiting for
through the days, the months and the years.
Always searching...
In the darkness through the tears.
Rolling thunder
I can't take the silent lies
I won't stop calling
when faith is falling.

If I break will it mean that it's all over?
Though in hurt I can never turn away.
Without hope we all have nothing,
Only darkness lost in fear.
I will hold on to tomorrow
When I will have you near.
I hope.

The world keeps turning as I look up to the stars
Are you sleeping?
Sleeping safely where you are?
Are you calling from this nightmare?
Are you here?
Can you hear me?

Turning whispers to a scream
Nothing can make me stronger
Though it hurts
I will never turn away.

We are hope.
We all have nothing
Holding on just lost in fear
I will hold on until tomorrow
when I will have you here.

Without love there is no meaning.
Only darkness, pain and tears.
i will hold on until tomorrow
When I will have you here.

In my heart...
In my heart.
Without hope we all have nothing
Only darkness lost in fear
I will hold on until tomorrow
when I will hold you here.

I hope.

« Last Edit: April 16, 2017, 08:52:43 AM by Concerned »


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Re: Just in Case You Need Some Hope Today
« Reply #249 on: May 28, 2017, 08:49:09 AM »
Sometimes people run far, far away changing their lives (and their families) due to a crime

It's hard to tell what may have caused him to run - perhaps a disclosed mental illness, or perhaps outstanding charges connected to an assault and weapons charge. But, Anton Pilipa disappeared five years ago. And, his brother Stefan continued to look for him.

Originally the anti-poverty activist living in Toronto, Montreal and British Columbia went missing in 2012 and was found in Brazil when highway police in November 2016 picked up an itinerant man without identification.

"I knew he didn't belong to that road. Anton is a different type from us Brazilians, he stands out," Brazilian-Canadian Police Officer Helenice Vidigal said. She searched online and Twittered Stefan who didn't want to get his hopes up. He launched a drive to raise money for the trip, but by the time he got there, his brother fled the hospital and headed to the Amazonian jungle. He was soon found in a Manaus hospital where Stefan picked him up in January and brought him in February 2017. Upon return, Toronto arrested him for outstanding charges.



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Re: Just in Case You Need Some Hope Today
« Reply #250 on: May 29, 2017, 06:39:23 AM »
Sometimes Getting Advice from Individuals that Make a Career Out of Finding People Can Produce Helpful Search Tips

There are many investigators out there who have the experience and expertise to help assist in finding a missing person. I stumbled upon a site today that was well written for a resource in the U.S., but this is just one of many. Finding the right investigator is probably a topic for another story, but here are a few tips provied on "Investigator Confidential"

Who Benefits from a Search?
  • Adoption
  • Family Reunions
  • Reunited Friendships
  • Fractured Friendships
  • Financial Debts
  • Moral Debts

How Do I Find Someone?
  • Search Engines
  • Social Networking Web Sites
  • Other Web Sites (like The Ultimates, World Wide Internet Directory, and RootsWeb Genealogical Data Cooperative Page, and more. This is a U.S. resource so the equivalent in other countries can be researched)

Other Resources to Find Someone
  • Directory Assistance
  • Libraries
  • Public Records
    • Financial Records
    • Business Name Indexes
    • Real Estate Records
    • Tax Information
    • Registered Voter Information
    • Court Records
  • Province Records
    • Bank Records
    • Bankruptcy Records
    • Birth Records
    • Corporate Records
    • Death Records
    • Divorce Files
    • Investment Records
    • Marriage Licenses
    • Retirement Accounts Records
    • Uniform Commercial Code Filings
    • Welfare Records
  • Federal Records
    • Federal Aviation Pilot License
    • Interstate Commerce Commission Records
    • Military Records
    • Postal Records
    • Tax Court
  • Driver License Record Database
  • Private Investigators

« Last Edit: May 29, 2017, 06:45:44 AM by Concerned »


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Re: Just in Case You Need Some Hope Today
« Reply #251 on: May 29, 2017, 08:39:08 AM »
There is nothing worse than missing a loved one and feeling helpless. Going years on end wondering if you've done everything to find your loved one. Constantly double-guessing, did I work alongside with law enforcement the best I possibly could? As the minutes, hours, weeks, days, months and years go by searching, waiting, and coping...

Here is a look at some proactive things you can become acquainted with to see if any learnings could apply. Be helpful. Spur ideas. Provide hope. Some of the resources below provide an overview of a process (that doesn't mean your current law enforcement takes this approach), however by looking up industry standards, you may run across something that will be helpful - if just for knowledge, or for direction, or to bring up with those searching for your loved one.

National organizations worldwide publish policy and procedures for finding missing persons so sometimes their insight can spur additional search ideas. Countries are collaborating and sharing best practices. Here are some resources I found from U.S. that they use to train, inform, or guide law enforcement there. (We should put together something similar for Canada, if found.)

The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children(R) in U.S. Publishes a Policy and Procedure Manual that Has Tips, for example:

Types of Cases that Come Before Them
  • Nonfamily Abduction
  • Family Abduction
  • Runaway/Thrownaway
  • Thrownaway
  • Missing Involuntarily/Lost/Injured
  • Other

Checklist of step-by-step recommendations for successful case investigation

Statistical information is available at:

Items law enforcement can do to help in investigations:
  • Law Enforcement Training, visit
    • NCMEC University Online
    • Missing Children Seminar for Chief Executives
    • Exploited Children Seminar for Chief Executives
    • Forensic Imaging Training
    • Advanced Forensic Imaging Workshop
    • Child Sex Trafficking: Awareness and Response (CSTAR)
    • Missing Children: Dynamics and Response
    • Missing and Exploited Children: What Security Professionals Need to Know
    • Telecommunications Best  Practices for Missing and Abducted Children
    • Additional Training Resources
  • Use AMBER Alert and Other Missing-Children Notification Programs
  • Set-up and Use Secondary Distribution of AMBER Alerts
  • Embrace Alternative Notification Systems
    • Post Office - Deliver Me Home Program(R)
    • Local Cable Programming
    • Broadcast Faxes
    • Broadcast eMails
    • Vehicle and Mass Transit Posts
    • Reverse 911 Program - high-speed, phone communications service for emergency notifications that is capable of delivering customized, prerecorded emergency messages directly to homes and businesses
  • Form Child Abduction Response Teams (CART)
  • Protect Children from Online Victimization, from schoolyards, playgrounds, shopping malls, and internet. Visit for more information on the ICAC Task Force Program
  • Develop and Deliver Child-Safety Programs, visit "More Publications: for "Guidelines for Programs to reduce Child Victimization"
  • Investigate Family-Abduction Cases by Prosecutor's Office
    • Develop Missing-Children Clearinghouses
    • Develop Newborn/Infant-Abduction Program
  • Identify and Track Sex Offenders
  • Extend Resources to Missing Young Adults
    • Look into Care Projects: Children Missing from Care Project, visit for "More Publications" beginning page 169 of "Children Missing From Care: The Law-Enforcement Response" guide.
    • Look into Recovery of Long-Term Missing Children, visit database to help solve these cases.
    • Become familiar with Reunification of Missing Children
    • Form a National Emergency Child Locator Center (Expedite Reunification during National Disasters)
  • Identify and Track Sex Offenders

There are guidelines for conducting various types of cases, investigative checklists, initial response, investigative considerations, prolonged investigation tips, and recovery/case closure assistance:
  • Nonfamily Abduction, pages 49-76
  • Family Abduction, pages 77-106
  • Runaway, pages 107-124
  • Critically Missing, Abducted or Lost Children, pages 108-140
  • Missing Involuntarily/Lost/Injured
(This list is not in the brochure, should be)
  • Other

There's an Agency Self-Assessment for Missing-Children Preparedness Checklist that can help strengthen investigations for agencies that may not have had as much experience with these types of cases. See page 183-191 of

There is a Victim/Family Data-Collection Questionnaire. This provides a wealth of information that a parent can provide to law enforcement to have on hand, even if the law enforcement entity doesn't use this system. See page 195-203


Missing and Abducted Children: A Law-Enforcement Guide to Case Investigation and Program Management, Fourth Edition 2011,

APCO International's (The Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials - International) Standard for Public Safety Telecommunicators When Responding to Calls of Missing, Abducted, and Sexually Exploited Children, visit

Building Community Building Hope, 2016/2017 Prevention Resource Guide, visit

Amber Alert: Best Practice Guide, visit

North American Missing and Unidentified Persons System, visit

Practical Homicide Investigation: Tactics, Procedures and Forensic Techniques, visit

« Last Edit: July 09, 2017, 07:08:04 AM by Concerned »


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Re: Just in Case You Need Some Hope Today
« Reply #252 on: May 29, 2017, 09:58:27 AM »
Awesome posts, Concerned, with a great gathering of resources! I wonder in fact if these last two posts could actually use their own thread and be dupicated there? What do you think, DebbieC? The information provided could be quite useful for someone beginning a search but I don't think they would know to look/begin here. (lol, I agree these offer "hopeful" advice and so should stay here, I just think perhaps a "Suggestions when Searching" thread might also be awesome). What do you think?
Thanks again Concerned for putting this info together!
« Last Edit: May 29, 2017, 10:02:53 AM by 2soccermom »


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Re: Just in Case You Need Some Hope Today
« Reply #253 on: May 29, 2017, 02:12:00 PM »
Hi 2Soccermom,

Here are a couple of sites we started that provide search suggestions, too:

What Resources Do We Have?

Unidentified and Missing Worldwide Search

Why People Disappear


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Re: Just in Case You Need Some Hope Today
« Reply #254 on: May 30, 2017, 11:05:53 PM »
oh! Awesome. Sorry I haven't seen those already. G'job! :)