Sierra LaMar – Experiences From A Volunteer Member Of The Search Team
The following is part four of six that I have written regarding my experiences in the last several months as a volunteer member of the search team looking for Sierra LaMar. My goal is to keep the keep this story alive and motivate the current volunteers and new volunteers to continue the search efforts to bring Sierra LaMar home to her family and friends.
PART 4 of 6 - Giving Back/A Dream Or My Imagination?
I am sometimes rather surprised how some of my family, friends and coworkers feel about me going out almost every Saturday searching for Sierra LaMar. Some of them sincerely appreciate the effort I am making to help find her and then others look at me in a strange puzzled way not understanding why I am doing this.
I have no idea what it would be like for a family member to be missing, but over the years I known several people that have died. My sister's son was killed in a motorcycle accident 4 years ago. He was just a few year older than Sierra and we all live with his absence everyday. On May 22, 1976, 28 members of the Yuba City High school choir died in a tragic bus crash and I knew just about all of them since grammar school and I still remember many of their faces.
One of my friends said the reason why I continue to join the search efforts is because of the Vietnam MIA/POW bracelet that I still wear. During the Vietnam war people would wear them in recognition of the pilots that were shot down and held as prisoners of war or missing in action. After 41 years I still wear the bracelet and I rarely take it off. I remember the look on the faces of LaMar family the first time that I saw them at the Search Center and this always motivated me to keep coming back to search for Sierra LaMar. I can tell by looking at the family that they do sincerely appreciate the volunteers that come out searching for their daughter.
One morning prior to the beginning of a search one of the volunteers said, “What would the family do if we didn't come every Wednesday and Saturday?” That statement was a big motivator for me to keep coming back.
A Dream Or My Imagination?
During the searches in the thick bush of Morgan Hill it is hard for me to not think about what it would be like to find Sierra, dead or alive. It is always a rather unnerving feeling coming across a suspected area not knowing if this is going to be day we are all waiting for. I have thought of countless scenarios of finding her, they are all now more like movie pictures running in my head over and over again. When I revisit those thoughts in my head I really don’t know if I am simply remembering a dream (I have had more dreams about me personally find Sierra than I can count) or am I imagining something.
On one search we came across what appeared to some kind of a make-shift camp. Approaching a camp can get rather scary since you really don’t know what you are walking into, mainly because of the bushes and trees that are normally blocking your visibility. If you walk into a marijuana farm and if there are people present, they are most likely thinking that you are a part of a law enforcement team packing a loaded gun, when you are really nothing but a volunteer with a small stick in your hand looking for an abducted young teenage girl.
The camp was empty but I found a small upside down box with an old bible on top of it which was opened up. Who put this bible here? When was it put here? Why was it put here? About 50 feet away was a large roll of carpet that was rolled up. Finding rolled up carpet out in the woods can always look very suspicious and I am always thinking that a body is going to be rolled up inside of it. My thoughts were racing in my head — are we going to find her body wrapped up in that carpet?
I remembering thinking to myself, will I be the one that determines it is a body rolled up in the carpet? If it is a body, how quickly will we find out who it is? What if it is obvious that the body is Sierra? Will I then pick up that bible on the box and say a prayer next to her body? Will I return to the Search Center and tell her mother that I just happened to find a bible in a remote camp and decided to say a prayer over Sierra’s body?
I think I need to go back to that camp and take a picture of that bible, maybe that is where the clue is to this case. It is amazing how my mind can go spinning so quickly. I have imagined more times than I can remember finding her alive all tied up in some secluded area. She is alive, she is now safe and one of the volunteers hands her a cell phone so that she can call her parents to let her know that she is alive and well. We would then have the biggest celebration party that Morgan Hill has ever seen.
Stay tuned for Part 5 on Wednesday.