Finding The Missing: 4 Ways Chillicothe Is Fighting BackBack to Discuss »
In the wake of the unexplained disappearances and deaths of six women from Chillicothe, the tight-knit community continues to search for answers, remember the victims, and fight back against an emerging drug scene that threatens their town. Here’s what they are doing to find the missing women and prevent others from vanishing:
1. Harnessing The Power Of Social Media
After 26-year-old Tiffany Sayre disappeared in May 2015, members of the community began forming online groups in an effort to stay on top of new sightings and clues. Sayre’s aunt created a Facebook page dedicated to the missing women of Chillicothe and the surrounding places where people could post information or find help locating their loved ones. Today, social media continues to be a cathartic outlet for members of the community. Other Facebook groups and online forums are overflowing with memories of the missing women and information about upcoming events.
2. Organizing Vigils
In June 2015, community members organized a vigil for the victims, and Sayre’s aunt sold t-shirts with faces of the missing women to attendees. Organizers hoped the event would raise awareness and encourage residents to remember the victims as the loving mothers and daughters their families knew them to be. In addition to vigils, the community continues to host marches and prayer groups for the missing women, each event teeming with anxious residents who are eager for law enforcement to uncover a critical break in the case.
3. Keeping Media Coverage Alive
Over at the Chillicothe Gazette, editor Mike Throne has been following the story of the missing women since the very beginning. His commitment to providing in-depth coverage paid off when The Huffington Post picked up the story in May 2015; other news outlets followed suit shortly thereafter, and by June, Chillicothe was in the national spotlight. Caitlin Turner, a former Gazette reporter who also followed the stories, agreed to participate in Investigation Discovery’s docuseries about the missing women because she hopes the series will help bring the investigation to a close. In an interview with the Gazette, Turner said, "I decided to come back because I felt the stories were still very much unfinished. And, on the off-chance they are watching the series, they know they are wanted at home." Those involved with the series hope that by keeping the investigation top of mind for viewers will help generate more tips and ultimately lead to closure for the families of the victims.
4. Mobilizing Law Enforcement
Last summer, members of the Sheriff’s office, FBI, and the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation created a task force dedicated to information gathering and the prevention of future disappearances. In an interview with the Gazette, Chief Deputy T.J. Hollis, of the Ross County Sheriff's Office, explained how the task force was utilizing new resources to refocus their efforts. "We've built bridges into the community that were never there before," he said. “We've unlocked doors to other agencies that have been very helpful to us as we investigate these cases. We've empowered a lot of people that never felt that way before."
HOW TO HELP
People with information related to the missing women are encouraged to call 740-774-3463 (FIND), or 740-773-8477 (TIPS), or email FindMe@RossSheriff.com. To file a report anonymously, you can also go to SouthernOhioCrimeStoppers.com.