http://www.semissourian.com/story/1554509.htmlSearch for missing Dexter man going over two weeks
Tuesday, July 14, 2009 ~ Updated 1:30 PM
By Donna Farley ~ Daily American Republic
POPLAR BLUFF, Mo. -- For the second week there is no sign of a Poplar Bluff business owner who disappeared from an area campground. The search for Robert Peters is ongoing, according to Wayne County Sheriff Phillip Burton.
Law enforcement continues to investigate possible leads and help with the ground search efforts of Peters family and volunteers, Burton said.
The 43-year-old was last seen June 28 at Hidden Valley Campground in northeastern Wayne County. Peters, of Dexter, owns Miracle Ear Hearing Centers in Poplar Bluff and Sikeston.
Family members believe Peters may have been disoriented because of complications from diabetes. They say he may have wandered away from the campground or accepted a ride in a vehicle without understanding what he was doing.
"We are still getting phone calls in from possible sightings in Scott County, Sikeston and the Cape Girardeau area," Burton said. "We've received several leads from people who believe they have seen him or picked him up. But we haven't been able to confirm any of those 100 percent, so we can't rule out that he wandered away."
Witnesses who saw the man in the early morning hours June 28 said he seemed confused. His wife, Vicki, has said low blood sugar levels have left Peters at the point where he did not know his own name in the past. Peters needs regular doses of insulin and also takes anti-rejection medication for a kidney transplant.
His family has continued to organize ground searches of the Hidden Valley area and Castor River with volunteers.
They planned to search with friends this weekend, Vicki said, but are not sure how to proceed.
"We don't know where else to go," Vicki said. "I wish I knew."
Family members and search volunteers have been meeting at the home of Gale Francis, at the corner of highways 34 and Y near Twin Bridges campground.
When man power permits, the sheriff's department also continues to search, Burton said.
"The area has been very well covered, but is such rough terrain, ... with such thick cover, you would almost need to be standing right on top of him," Burton said.
Immediately after his disappearance, upwards of 200 volunteers, multiple cadaver and tracking dogs, as well as helicopters searched the area. A Missouri State Highway Patrol plane also covered the area between Dexter and Hidden Valley Campground Monday.
Nothing has been found, according to authorities.
Peters' Ford Ranger pickup truck was left at the campground. The man wears an insulin pump, which contained three to four days of medication when he disappeared, but there has been no indication the pump has been refilled, Burton said.
"We will keep following leads. We need to keep his name and his photo out there, in case he has gone somewhere," Burton said. "At this point, he has not had his medication and would be in very bad shape."
Peters was wearing khaki shorts, a light blue T-shirt, glasses and sandals when he was last seen. Anyone with any information about his whereabouts should contact the Wayne County Sheriff's Department at 573-224-3219.