November 01, 2018 06:42 PM
5 EYEWITNESS NEWS and the Jacob Wetterling Resource Center are partnering to raise awareness about missing Minnesotans.
Seventeen-year-old Jeremy Jourdain was last seen two years ago on Halloween night in Bemidji. Police have investigated 150 tips and they say it's like Jeremy just vanished.
Jeremy's Aunt, Alexandra Tanner, said their family has been holding on to hope and searching for answers since he disappeared.
"We want to know what happened. We want to know where he's at. We just want him home," she said.
Jeremy was at a Halloween party with family and friends at the Washington Avenue Apartments on the east side of Bemidji. According to Bemidji Police Department Chief Mike Mastin, he left about midnight.
"He decided he just didn't want to be there anymore and he got up and he left," Mastin said.
Mastin said it's still a mystery about where Jeremy was going. Friends saw him run a couple blocks to the north to the corner of Wood Avenue SE and 6th Street. Tracking dogs lost his scent at the intersection.
"That's the last place he was seen" Mastin said. "When we brought in the tracking search dogs, that's the last place they had scent. It was right in the middle of the street."
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Investigators speculate Jeremy got in a car, but they say there is no proof. And they know he had a cell phone, but there has been no activity.
"It was cold that night" Mastin said. "And there were initial concerns he did attempt to run home."
Jeremy lived with his grandfather in Cass Lake, which is 13 miles from Bemidji.
Since that night, family, friends and police have searched every road, ditch and lake between Bemidji and Cass Lake. And there's no sign of Jeremy.
"The initial thought was perhaps he succumbed to the weather and we will potentially find him somewhere in the neighborhood or out that County Road 8, somewhere between Bemidji and Cass Lake" Mastin said.
Tanner does not believe Jeremy ran away from home.
"He was a homebody," Tanner said. "He doesn't like being out in public, even though he loves to play basketball."
Jourdain is 6-feet-four-inches tall. He played basketball on a traveling team and for Cass Lake-Bena. The high school season was about to begin.
Teammates called Jeremy "Worm", and they used their march to the state basketball tournament to raise awareness he was missing. They held signs up on the sidelines with his picture, #FindWorm and his jersey number.
"When they raised up his jersey, you could just feel how much that impacted the community" Mastin said. "And they still remember him and they want answers."
The last picture of Jeremy Jourdain was taken at the Halloween party. It's a blurry cell phone photo and he has his back turned, however, he can bee seen wearing a blue and gray hooded sweatshirt.
Mastin is asking deer hunters and property owners to take a good look when they're out in the woods.
"He was wearing a blue and gray hooded sweatshirt, blue jeans and gray shoes. You know you might find that old sweatshirt next to a barn on the family farm, that's important for us. Keep an eye out for anything. It's really important, especially this time of year when things are more visible."
Jeremy's family hopes a clue will bring him home.
"Not knowing is the hardest" Tanner said. "He's my first thought in the morning and my last thought when I go to bed. He's missed out on a lot; his own high school graduation, the state tournament, the birth of his nephew, Christmases, Thanksgivings, birthdays. Just all the stuff you do together normally as a family."
Jeremy's family reported him missing the next morning. The Jacob Wetterling Resource Center says they did exactly the right thing.
The family has created a Let's Bring Jeremy Home Facebook page and raised $8,000 for a reward. Anyone with information is asked to call 1-800-THE-LOST or Bemidji Police Detective Michelle Leffelman at (218) 333-8367.
The Jacob Wetterling Resource Center assists families who have missing loved ones in many different ways. They can be reached at (651) 714-4673.
Updated: November 01, 2018 06:42 PM
Created: October 31, 2018 04:19 PM
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