http://www.ktka.com/news/2007/jan/15/girl_still_missing_25_years_later/Girl still missing 25 years later
January 15, 2007
A Topeka, Kansas man is reminded of his own missing daughter after hearing the news of two missing boys reunited with their families.
The father of Jackie Hay speaks out more than twenty-five years after her disappearance.
"She wasn't old enough to be bad. She was a sweet kid," remembers Olen Hay.
He still recalls the day his five-year-old daughter, Jackie Dene Hay, went missing.
"I was getting ready to leave and couldn't find her," says Hay.
The only information police had to go on was given to them by a Gas Service man who saw Jackie following a man. But Hay says police took nearly four hours to begin their search.
"By the time that it took for the police to investigate, he could have been almost to St. Louis."
Hay says he wishes the Amber Alert system would have been in place back in 1981.
The system went into effect statewide in 2002. It all began when children's advocate Jim Brewer saw the alert system featured on America's Most Wanted.
"I said, 'Topeka needs something like this', and my wife smiled and said, 'you are going to do this aren't you?'"
Brewer worked with the Police Department and Shawnee County Sheriff and eventually the Attorney General's office to bring the Amber Alert system to the state. He believe it's effective because it gets the word out so fast.
"With everybody looking, it makes it tough to hide," says Brewer.
He was ecstatic to hear the news about the two boys in Missouri who were reunited with their families, especially the one missing for four years "I'm glad they found this kid cause now he has a future."
Hay says twenty-five years later, the hardest part is just not knowing. And Hay hopes that by telling his story, others will remember the children still missing.