Authorities searching for missing Mount Hood teen

Elijah Lee


Elijah Lee

The Hood River County Sheriff’s Office is looking for a local teen who has been missing for nearly two weeks.

Elijah Lee, 14, has been reported missing from his Mount Hood home since Monday, Sept. 16. Pete Hughes, public information officer for the Hood River County Sheriff’s Office, reported Lee ran away from home, possibly due to a family conflict. Hughes said the office “was involved with him and his family before the runaway was reported.”

Hughes said Lee’s mother, Hanni Church, also reported her son missing to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. A detective has been assigned to the case and the sheriff’s office is “running down various leads” and working with the national organization in an attempt to find Lee, Hughes said.

The sheriff’s office averages about one missing child report a week, according to Hughes, but he said most juveniles “return the next day with their tails between their legs” after running away from home. However, he added that it’s “not unusual” for runaways to stay missing for longer periods.

On the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children’s website, Lee is listed as an “endangered runaway,” but Hughes said there was “nothing to indicate that he is in danger.” However, he noted that any juvenile who runs away from home also runs the risk of putting his or herself in a bad situation.

“We just don’t know where he’s at and for a 14-year-old, that’s dangerous,” Hughes explained.

Lee is described as a white male, 5 feet 9 inches in height, weighing 120 pounds, with brown hair, blue eyes, and gauged ears. He is currently an eighth-grade student at Wy’east Middle School in Odell, according to Principal Catherine Dalbey, who said Lee last attended school Thursday, Sept. 12.

“He is a very bright kid,” she said. “He helped out with our sixth-grade orientation day as one of our WEB leaders. I hope that he comes home soon.”

Those with information are advised to call the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children at 1-800-THE-LOST (1-800-843-5678) or the Hood River County Sheriff’s Office at 541-386-2711.

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See www.co.hood-river.or.us to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge



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