Parents of missing Maui woman plead for her safe return
A desperate family asks for help finding their missing daughter on Maui. Five days ago, on Wednesday, 35-year-old Amanda Eller disappeared. Her parents - who live in North Carolina - flew in from an international vacation on Sunday to join the search.
MAKAWAO, Hawaii - A desperate family asks for help finding their missing daughter on Maui.
Five days ago, on Wednesday, 35-year-old Haiku resident Amanda Eller disappeared. Her parents - who live in North Carolina- flew in from a Carribean vacation on Sunday to join the search. On Sunday night, they stood with her friends at a press conference, to ask for their daughter's safe return.
They're asking for people to come by the Sip Me cafes in Makawao and Kahului on Monday, to pick up flyers to distribute around the island. They also want anyone who was at the Makawao Forest Reserve on Wednesday, May 8, between 8 a.m. and noon, send in tips or photos.
They say they're expanding the search from trails, to remote locations she may have fallen into or have been abducted to.
Amanda's mother Julia Eller tearfully told KITV4 this is "a mother's worst nightmare and that "it has been an emotional rollercoaster. I've tried to stay positive. If I let myself get mired in self pity of how terrible this is, I can't help her if I'm caught up in that."
Julia says Amanda's physical and spiritual strength will serve her well with keeping a calm mind in any situation. "She is an inspiration to me, particularly since I've been on my own personal journey lately," Julia related.
The two are very close, and Julia says she will be in the field searching for her daughter, hoping their strong emotional connection will help lead the rescuers to Amanda. "I never in a million years thought this would happen to me," says the heartbroken mother.
Eller's parents say on Monday at 10 a.m., Maui police are meeting them to share their information on the search. It's now up to the family to take over. The county's policy is to search for 72 hours, and it officially ended its search at 11:40 a.m. Sunday.
Search party lead Sarah Haynes says there are hundreds of volunteers who are looking for her. They still believe she will be found alive and well, because of her background as a physical therapist and yoga teacher.
"She is a strong, strong girl. If she's out there alive, she's going to get through this," Haynes said. She also addressed the possibility that Eller may have been abducted.
Eller's parents are offering a $10,000 reward for her safe return.
Haynes says she gets "about 600 calls in two hours" regarding the search. She asks people with tips to post it to the official search party page on Facebook, and if you must reach her directly, she greatly prefers text.
The Find Amanda Facebook page is at https://www.facebook.com/AmandaEllersMissing/.
Sarah Haynes, friend and search party lead (as of this writing), contact info: 415-336-4591.