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Helicopters, Boats Added to ISU Student Search

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Helicopter teams outfitted with infrared technology and Department of Natural Resources officials with sonar equipment are being added to the search for missing ISU senior Gerald Smith.  University spokeswoman Tara Singer said searches Monday focused on a railroad trestle pictured in a photo on Smith’s Facebook page, but turned up no evidence of the Avon resident and risk management major.  Singer said school officials have talked with students who celebrated alongside Smith the night he disappeared, adding the portrait painted by those conversations is not one of a student in distress, but rather of a student eagerly planning for the next chapter in his life.

“Gerald was looking forward to his graduation this coming Saturday,” Singer said. “He was making plans to attend a friend’s wedding in Chicago the week after next.  He has a job that’s lined up and was ready to go back for the final…interview next week.  So all indications are this was a good student; a happy student.”

A reward fund for information leading to Smith’s whereabouts has also been established and school officials are working with Crimestoppers to comb for clues about where Smith might have gone after leaving the Ballyhoo Tavern on the east side of the Terre Haute campus last Friday.

Anyone with information on Smith’s disappearance may call ISU’s Public Safety office at (812) 237-5555.  Those wishing to add to the reward fund may give to the ISU Foundation by calling (812) 237-3732.

Stan Jastrzebski

WFIU/WTIU News Senior Editor Stan Jastrzebski spent time as a reporter with WGN Radio in Chicago and as an editor at Network Indiana, an Indianapolis news service. Stan is the winner of awards from the Associated Press, the RTDNA, the Indiana Broadcasters Association and the Society of Professional Journalists. He hosts WFIU's Ask the Mayor and anchors WTIU's InFocus.

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