MERIDIAN — Authorities in Neshoba County and family members from Meridian are currently trying to locate Gerry Manley, a 24-year old man from Meridian who has been reported missing since last week.
According to Manley's mother, Dale Sims, Manley, was last heard from when he called from a Philadelphia convenience store between 11 p.m. and midnight on Feb. 12. The fact he called from Philadelphia and the way the conversation ended abruptly has Sims worried.
"He had called his girlfriend back here in Meridian to come and pick him up and then in mid sentence and with what she called alarm in his voice he hung up," said Sims.
Sims said Manley's last words to his girlfriend were, "I gotta get off! I gotta get off!"
Sims said she filed a missing person report with the Philadelphia Police Department Monday but that report didn't go through because Sims had left off some information. She went back Wednesday and re-filed the report.
"We have the report and all the information they gave us has been entered on the National Crime Information Center system," said Philadelphia Police Chief Dickie Sistrunk Thursday afternoon.
Despite that Sims hasn't stopped looking for her son.
"All day Monday and Wednesday I went up and down Hwy. 19 looking for any sign of him," said Sims. "This is not like him."
Sims said her son always kept her posted on where he was and what he was doing. They, she said, may not have seen each other every day but barely a day didn't go by that her son didn't call her to just catch up. For him not to contact her after almost a week really is out of character for him, she said.
Sims said her son, who had gone with a group of friends to a home in the House community on Hwy. 19 North, decided to walk home to Meridian on that Friday night. But apparently when he came to Hwy. 19 North he turned north instead of south. Hours later he found himself at O'Neals Store at the four-way stop. That is when he made the call to his girlfriend in Meridian to come and pick him up.
"He was trying to tell her exactly where he was when he had to hang up for some reason," said Sims.
Manley is described as standing 5-10, weighing 170 lbs. He was last seen wearing a brown Carhart work jacket and jeans with a camoflauge hat with a white "A" on the front. If anyone knows the whereabouts of Manley they are asked to contact the nearest law enforcement agency.