The Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) is grateful to all of the people who gave their time, energy, and talent to developing this Guide, especially the following parents who know firsthand the pain, suffering, and hope of families with missing children:

Heather Cox and Marion Boburka, mother and grandmother respectively of Shelby Cox, who was found murdered on November 18, 1995.

Colleen Nick, mother of Morgan Nick, who has been missing since June 9, 1995.

Claudine and Don Ryce, parents of Jimmy Ryce, who was found murdered on December 9, 1995.

Patrick Sessions, father of Tiffany Sessions, who has been missing since
February 9, 1989.

Patty Wetterling, mother of Jacob Wetterling, who has been missing since
October 22, 1989.

This group of parents created this Guide as a labor of love and as a message of hope and encouragement for families whose children are still missing. Their courage and strength are greatly admired.

OJJDP also thanks the many professionals who have given their time and effort to find children who are missing, who have worked to prevent children from being abducted, and who have put together this Guide for families facing this crisis. This includes Helen Connelly, James P. Finley, and Joellen Talbot of Fox Valley Technical College; Cal Henderson, Sheriff of Hillsborough County, FL; Margaret Frierson of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (South Carolina branch); Nancy McBride of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (Florida branch); and Heather Keegan, Letha Paulhus, and Donna Uzzell of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. The final editing and production of this Guide were performed by the Juvenile Justice Clearinghouse. OJJDP acknowledges Tina Kramer, Denise Collins, and Kari Miller for graphic design and layout and Ellen Grogan and Amy Ratcliffe for editorial support.

Many individuals painstakingly reviewed the Guide to make sure that it provides parents with the information they so desperately need during these crises, especially Peter D. Banks, director of training and outreach, Julia Caughey Cartwright, director of public affairs, Terri Delany, director of publications, Ben Ermini, director of missing children's division, John Rabun, vice president and chief operating officer, and Elizabeth P. Yore, chief legal officer, National Center for Missing and Exploited Children; Helen Fitzgerald, director of the grief program, Mount Vernon Center for Community Mental Health; Charles Masino, retired detective, Phoenix (AZ); Hugh Munn, executive assistant, South Carolina Law Enforcement Division; Sergeant Gary O'Connor, Lower Gwynedd (PA) Township Police Department; Detective Wayne Promisel, Fairfax County (VA) Police Department; Commander Brad Russ, Portsmouth (NH) Police Department; Cindy Lent and Bill Hagmaier, Child Abduction and Serial Killer Unit, Federal Bureau of Investigation; and Sue Shriner, Office for Victims of Crime, U.S. Department of Justice. Special thanks also go to Ron Laney, Director of OJJDP's Missing and Exploited Children's Program. His concern for missing children and their parents inspired the creation of this Guide.

This Guide is dedicated to all the children -- past, present, and future -- who are separated from their families. Our prayer is that you always know that the search will continue until you are found.

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OJJDP Report: When Your Child Is Missing: A Family Survival Guide, May 1998