The Search For Lauren Hits Home.

by Amber on June 10, 2011

What did you do for lunch today?

I spent part of mine stomping through the woods behind my house, peering into thickets and poking bulging leaf piles with sticks. I was searching for something—something I never thought I’d have to look for. The body of a missing girl.

But Lauren Spierer is missing, and I had to make sure she wasn’t somewhere I could find her.

You’ve probably read the headlines about Lauren Spierer. You’ve probably seen the cute blonde girl’s picture smiling back  at you from the missing person’s flyer.

Lauren Spierer Reward Flyer

You’ve probably heard about how she disappeared late Friday night, and how a whole town has mobilized to find her.

But you can’t imagine how it feels to be living in that town. To wonder if you’re going to be the one who accidentally stumbles upon her. To spend your drive time scanning the cornfields, woods and construction sites you pass, looking for…something.

People are gathering three times a day to search for her. Police are diving into local lakes and looking through dumpsters. Farmers  (and there are a lot of those around here) are combing through their outbuildings and fields. And we were all asked to spend 20 minutes during our lunch hour today searching our own surroundings—just in case.

It’s all anybody can talk about. Because things like this? Don’t happen here.

Bloomington is the kind of town where you can feel safe walking just about anywhere—even at 4 in the morning.

Bloomington is a  small town. A college town. A place that belongs in the world of Leave It To Beaver—not CSI.

But, as Lauren’s disappearance has reminded us, bad things do happen here. Men fight. Lovers quarrel. People steal. And 90-pound college girls go missing after venturing off alone into the night.

Have you seen her? Have you heard anything? Her family is desperate for information—any information. And since the internet is making the world ever smaller, the clue that leads police to her whereabouts could come from anywhere.

So keep your ear to the ground. Your eyes peeled. A young girl is missing, and its going to take all of us to find her.

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{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

Kathleen Foulkrod June 10, 2011 at 4:02 pm

Amber, I know EXACTLY how you feel. That was us two years ago with little Neveah. Two years later and they still have not found her killer. Our small town, the town I have grown up in, felt much the same way…safe…until that Memorial Day weekend 2 years ago. My mom and my sister both went on searches through the woods to look for her. All of us held our children closer and watched, hoping for a glimpse of her. Searches were daily, starting with hundreds of volunteers in the K-Mart parking lot. In the end, they found her body a few weeks later, likely buried alive in a shallow grave. A fisherman found her. I am praying for all of you, remembering Neveah, and holding my babies close. Praying they find Lauren, hoping she’s alive, and wishing life in YOUR small town could someday go back to normal. HUGS!

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Amber June 12, 2011 at 8:51 pm

I just feel so awful for her family. It’s a horrible thing to have to go through. The thought takes my breath away…

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Rebecca June 10, 2011 at 5:16 pm

Reminds me of Gina Dawn Brooks. Her story still haunts me.
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Jen June 10, 2011 at 8:50 pm

Wow, I can’t even imagine.

I hope that for her family’s sake she is found one way or another.
Jen recently posted..Hair Be Gone

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Amber June 12, 2011 at 8:50 pm

I think everyone does. I can’t even begin to imagine their pain (and I hope I never have to).

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Allison @ Alli n Son June 11, 2011 at 4:56 pm

Oh my god, how terrifying. I dont even know what else to say.
Allison @ Alli n Son recently posted..Here- Home- Hope Book Review

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Amber June 12, 2011 at 8:50 pm

Just hug your little guy close and be glad for those around you.

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Jane June 12, 2011 at 6:00 pm

This is really awful and you are right. Bad things do happen everywhere (unfortunately)
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Amber June 12, 2011 at 8:49 pm

They do. But luckily everyone here is doing their best to find her. Hopefully they will…soon.

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Stephanie February 16, 2012 at 1:37 am

Amber,
I just discovered your blog and really enjoyed some of your pieces. As a mom of two – now grown – kids, you reminded me of those tender years. The Lauren Spierer event leaves me totally conflicted however, because my daughter is at IU currently and lives closeby to where this all took place. Her time at IU has had a shadow cast on it because of Lauren’s disappearance. We never imagined something like this would happen in a town like Bloomington. The town and campus were what attracted her to leave California for Indiana. More poignant though, is the knowledge that one of her friends has ended up being labeled “a person of interest”. This young man was her neighbor for two years and was always a reasonable, normal person in her company. Now his name is out there and his reputation questioned, in spite of no actual evidence to connect him to Lauren’s dissappearance. This horrible event has taken a young woman from her family, destroyed reputations, and stolen the trust from the community of Bloomington. Let’s hope this never happens again in Btown.

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Amber February 17, 2012 at 8:59 am

Indeed. It was horrible all the way around – and I can only imagine how you must feel as a parent. Hopefully, they’ll eventually find out what happened to her and be able to stop all the crazy accusations. The good news is, though, it was an isolated incident. Bloomington is still a wonderful place to live and go to school.

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Allie Schinttler June 26, 2012 at 8:53 am

It has happened before in Bloomington…Jill Behrman disappeared in May, 2000 and her remains were not found until March, 2003. Tragic and senseless.

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