Family to expand search

Published 12:00 am Monday, November 14, 2005

vidalia &8212; The family of missing teenager Jonathan Edens is expanding its search &8212; and looking to get more information out about the strange case of his disappearance.

After a fourth day of searching near the site where Edens&8217; crashed truck was found last Thursday, family members had turned up no sign of the Vidalia teen.

Edens, 19, disappeared Tuesday night, sometime after he crashed his truck on Louisiana 565 near Deer Park while on his way to his parents&8217; house.

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Edens&8217; parents, Johnny and Lana, didn&8217;t even know Edens had crashed his truck until a sheriff&8217;s deputy on Thursday found the vehicle, with a smashed windshield and a dead deer in the back, in the woods off the highway.

&8220;It&8217;s just like he&8217;s vanished,&8221; his mother Lana said, fighting tears after another day of fruitless searching Sunday.

Volunteers searched on horseback over the weekend, and a New Orleans man with a helicopter is expected to help search for a few hours today.

Family members began putting up fliers Sunday, and Lana Edens has started to seek help from national media, including John Walsh&8217;s &8220;America&8217;s Most Wanted&8221; TV show.

&8220;We just want to get it out there,&8221; she said.

The family is also asking any volunteers who want to help search to contact them. A small group of family and friends has continued to search the area near Angelina plantation where the truck was found, but Lana Edens does not believe her son is in the area.

&8220;We pretty much know &8230; he&8217;s been taken somewhere else,&8221; she said.

&8220;We need volunteers to search in different places. There&8217;s not much more there at the crash site.&8221;

Lana Edens won&8217;t say that she completely believes foul play is involved, but she can&8217;t imagine what else could have happened to her son.

&8220;They have not picked up any scent or anything,&8221; she said.

Jonathan Edens had called his parents from his cell phone while at his girlfriend&8217;s house in Monterey before heading home on Tuesday night.

When his truck was found Thursday morning, family members said, bloody handprints led down the side of the truck, suggesting Edens had been conscious after the crash. His cell phone and wallet were left in the vehicle.

Anyone with any information about Edens&8217; whereabouts is asked to call the Concordia Parish Sheriff&8217;s Department at 318-336-5231, 318-386-2200 or 318-757-3162.

Anyone interested in volunteering with the search can call Lana or Johnny Edens at 318-336-5344.