The search for Heather Elvis, the 20-year-old Socastee, S. C., woman that went missing nearly two weeks ago, intensified over the weekend as boats scoured the waterways and the Center for Missing Persons (CUE) organized a broadened ground search around Peachtree Landing, the spot along the Waccamaw River where Elvis' abandoned car had been found on Dec. 19.
WPDE in Florence reported Dec. 28 that over sixty CUE volunteers, people who live all along the East Coast, searched the area with the help of members of the Myrtle Beach Fire Department, the Surfside Beach Fire Department, and several law enforcement agencies.
CUE Center for Missing Persons Director Monica Caison told WPDE, "These are some of the best law enforcement agencies down in this area and they've always been very forthwith in missing person cases. They're very aggressive in missing person cases and that's what it needs to solve it, so I'm confident there will be some kind of resolve and in the meantime we just have to keep a steady course."
That steady course has gotten extra support in recent days as the reward for information leading to locating Heather Elvis increased from $11,000 to $20,000 on Friday, according to The Sun News. Caison said the reward was just one of many resources used in finding missing persons, but it was important in that rewards commanded attention.
In addition to the larger reward, billboards with Heather Elvis' image have gone up along highways in Horry County.
“All together, as of today (Friday) there are 13 billboards up,” Caison told The Sun News. “Billboards are very helpful because people may miss a poster or not go into a particular store. Not everybody reads the newspaper, not everybody watches TV. We’re making sure we cover all bases."
The CUE director also noted that volunteers would be out searching around the Peachtree Landing area throughout the week, barring a breakthrough in the case.
Still, there have been few developments in the case, although Caison admitted that the extended ground search had been prompted by leads gathered by police.
Caison urged anyone with any kind of information to contact authorities. "I encourage people," she told WPDE, "if you know something, if you've heard something, if you saw something, even prior to this, call law enforcement, share what you know because they are steadily piecing things together to try and locate this young lady."
Anyone with information about the young woman's whereabouts or her circumstances are urged to call call 915-TIPS, or send an email to email@example.com.
Heather Elvis is described as being 5' 1" tall with brown hair and brown eyes.
She was last seen in the Carolina Forest area on Tuesday, Dec. 17, although her cell phone pinged early Wednesday morning before it was turned off. Her car, a dark green 2001 Dodge Intrepid, was found the following day and the search for the young woman began almost immediately. Her father, Terry Elvis, filed a missing person report as soon as the vehicle was found.
The family set up a Facebook page to keep track of developments in the investigation and to coordinate efforts to help as well. For updated information about the case, go to FindHeatherElvis on Facebook.