It's with great sadness that I must report Anthony's body was found this afternoon in the Red River. Please keep his friends and family in your prayers. So very sad!
I'm sitting at my deck table drinking a hot cup of coffee listening to planes and helicopters fly back and forth.
My heart aches.
This little boys name is Anthony. He is 11 years old. He is 5 feet and 94 pound. He has autism. He was last seen wearing a grey shirt with black lettering and plaid shorts. He is missing.
He went missing yesterday afternoon shortly after 2pm. He told his grandma he was going out to play in the yard and when she went to check on him he was nowhere to be found. Police, firefighters, boarder patrol agents, volunteers, etc. searched until nightfall with no sign of this sweet boy. They have resumed searching today.
This sweet boy is a neighbor of our dear friends. We heard about is disappearance almost immediately. Instantly the kids and I stopped what we were doing and prayed. We hopped in the Suburban and drove around searching for 2 hours. I stopped anyone I saw outside. Talked to construction workers, people walking dogs, etc. No one had seen him. When we had to stop searching full search crews were being assembled to search on foot. I had 4 small kids by myself so we stopped to get out of the way.
While we drove I continued to pray out loud. Eden is the only one who is old enough to fully grasp what is happening (the boys are clueless and Braelyn thinks he will be fine because he can find honey to eat. I'm not going to disrupt her childlike thinking. Her world will change fast enough. I don't need to speed it up!). Eden gets the seriousness of it. She prayed and looked right along with me. We begged the Lord. We pleaded with Him to cross our path with Anthony's. We cried together. We asked questions together. We asked God why together. We have full confidence that the Lord heard our prayers, but for reasons unknown to us He didn't answer our prayers yesterday.
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declared the Lord. As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts higher than your thoughts” Isaiah 55:8-9
Today they are still searching for Anthony. They live just outside of city limits on Rhinehart Dr. in East Grand Forks, MN. He is surrounded by farm fields, shelter belts, ditches, ponds, creeks, and the Red River. He is drawn to water, ATV's, campers, and vans. If you live in that area, check and double check your property. He could be anywhere! Check, double check, triple check. Just because he wasn't there an hour ago doesn't mean he isn't there now! If you see him call 911 immediately. Remember, he has autism. He may not willingly come to you. It's ok to stop him and hold him until the police come. He may kick and scream. He won't understand what you are doing. It's ok to keep him safe!
My heart is heavy. For a lot of reasons. One of them being that very soon we will be bringing home our own special little girl. A little girl who easily could walk away in an instant without knowing the danger just around the corner. It's too close to home for me. Literally and figuratively!
He could be your child. He could be mine. Let's find this little boy!