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Angel Who Cares
09-06-2009, 11:32 AM
2009.09.06 Today's Current News - ***NO DISCUSSIONS HERE PLEASE ***

VIDEO~ FREMONT: Volunteers Search Lake Elizabeth For Signs Of Missing 5-Year-Old

Angel Who Cares
09-06-2009, 11:38 AM
No clues in search for missing Fremont boy
Organizers say Saturday effort leaves them with renewed hope
Posted: 09/05/2009 06:38:06 PM PDT
Updated: 09/05/2009 11:00:32 PM PDT
A massive volunteer search effort in Fremont on Saturday for Hasanni Campbell did not turn up any clues in the disappearance of the 5-year-old who went missing Aug. 10.

But it did give the organizers and the 124 volunteers who covered numerous areas in Fremont renewed hope that the Fremont boy is alive.

"It gave us hope that we're looking for a live, breathing, walking child," organizer Sherri Miller said.

Her co-organizer was Courtney Tascoe-Burris, daughter of civil rights attorney John Burris, who has served as a legal adviser to Campbell's foster parents.

Volunteers from the San Jose Search and Rescue Team, Newark Community Emergency Response Team, Oakland organizations and others began at Lake Elizabeth in Fremont at 9 a.m. They split into 11 search teams to scour the lake, the Dumbarton Quarry, Alameda Creek, the Alvarado Niles District and other areas around Fremont.

In the meantime, the Fremont school where Hasanni was enrolled, Leitch Elementary, has a psychologist on hand in case students need to talk about their concerns, but no one has sought his service, according to Nicole Steward, spokeswoman for the Fremont Unified School District.

The search ended at 3:30 p.m.

Miller said they will start searching in Oakland, where his foster father said the boy disappeared while in an unattended car in the Rockridge district.


Angel Who Cares
09-06-2009, 11:41 AM
VIDEO: Volunteers Search E. Bay For Hasanni Campbell Sep. 5, 2009, 6:45 p.m. PT: 3:25

Angel Who Cares
09-06-2009, 12:07 PM
Teams set out to search for Hasanni in Fremont
Sunday, September 6, 2009
They found a wheelbarrow. They found a suspiciously soft section of earth. And they found an old bag of marijuana.

But the 124 volunteers who swept through Fremont's 450-acre Central Park and explored Lake Elizabeth on Saturday did not find Hasanni Campbell, the 5-year-old Fremont boy who was last seen in early August.

"No news is good news," said Sherri-Lyn Miller, a San Leandro print-shop owner who organized the search and draped everyone in bright yellow "Hasanni Campbell Search Team" T-shirts.

Not finding him meant he could still be alive, she said.

Among the volunteers were some 20 orange-vested search experts from the nonprofit group San Jose Search and Rescue who accompanied the civilians and also scanned the shoreline of the 83-acre lake in rubber Zodiac boats. Jeff Emanuel, a diver, spent hours paddling about the murky, 7-foot-deep lake inhabited by trout, catfish, carp and some turtles.

2nd Headline:
Dozens of volunteers
The volunteers who gave up their Saturday to search for the missing boy knew that finding him would be a long shot. The park was chosen not because of any tip or clue, but because it was located in the same town where Hasanni lived. Yet dozens felt compelled to join in.

"I wouldn't rest if something like that happened to my son," said Reginald Page of East Palo Alto, clutching the hand of his son, 4-year-old A'mmani, as they waited for instructions on how to proceed. An articulate boy with long eyelashes, A'mmani made the volunteers laugh when Miller asked what he would do if he found Hasanni.

"I'm gonna make a lot of money!" he sang out.

He'd heard about the $60,000 reward.

The Page family was assigned to Group 10, a dozen or so people that included Patricia Newell of Dublin and her 15-year-old daughter, Daizshia.

"I want to teach her empathy and sympathy for others," Newell said. "If it happened to me, I'd want people to help me find my child."

Group 10 was dispatched to a marshy section called Stivers Lagoon Nature Area that had a meandering creek with plenty of footbridges to peer under and tall reeds to push aside in search of anything suspicious: A big bag. Children's garments. A toy.

Shortly into the search, Agnes Maez noticed something strange. The retired office manager from Hayward had stepped on a section of earth that felt different from the rest of the creekside path.

3rd Headline:
Spongy ground
"The area's soft and spongy," she told her friend Dee Fairfax, a retired accounting supervisor. "It feels hollow under here."

A San Jose Search and Rescue volunteer hurried over. Many of the trained experts won't give out their names. But his orange vest read "Klopper." He tapped the area with his foot, then called for backup.

"Do you think this is normal or hollow?" he asked another searcher in an orange vest, "O'Malley." After inspection, O'Malley said he thought it was probably normal.

"I'm going to say it's normal too," Klopper said.

4th Headline:
'Incredible' turnout

Miller, the organizer, said she was thrilled with the turnout - more than twice the number she expected.

"It's incredible!" she said, adding that the search will now expand to Oakland.

Neither of Hasanni's foster parents participated in Saturday's search. Louis Ross has said his foster son, who has cerebral palsy and wears braces on his legs, was kidnapped outside a shoe store in Oakland's Rockridge neighborhood on Aug. 10. Police say they don't believe the story, but lack evidence to charge Ross or Jennifer Campbell, Hasanni's aunt and foster mother with a crime.

A volunteer holds a Hasanni Campbell bulletin before a search at Fremont's Lake Elizabeth.

A San Jose Search and Rescue team combs Lake Elizabeth in hopes of finding the missing boy.

San Jose Search and Rescue members look for any signs of Hasanni Campbell near Lake Elizabeth in Fremont.

Dee Fairfax joined other volunteers in a search for Hasanni Campbell through the dense brush at Stivers Lagoon near Lake Elizabeth in Fremont on Saturday.

Volunteer Robert C. Mercer, left, and Tom O'Malley of the San Jose Search and Rescue team search a creek for any signs of Hasanni Campbell near Lake Elizabeth in Fremont on Saturday.

Members of the San Jose Search and Rescue team and other volunteers fan out in a large-scale search for Hasanni Campbell in the Stivers Lagoon area at Lake Elizabeth in Fremont on Saturday.

Reginald Page brought his 4-year-old son, A'mmani, from East Palo Alto to help in the search for Hasanni Campbell at Lake Elizabeth in Fremont on Saturday.

PHOTOS: Teams set out to search for Hasanni in Fremont