Search continues for missing Harrison couple

Boone County Sheriff Mike Moore says a veritable small army, largely volunteers, took to Crooked Creek on Sunday in the search for signs of John and Amy Villines.

The couple has been missing since Nov. 30th, when their vehicle washed off Highland Street in an apparent flash flood where Dry Branch Creek crosses the street. That creek drains into Lake Harrison via a tunnel from about West Stephenson Avenue.

The Harrison Daily Times reports officials searched the lake and as far down Crooked Creek as the Bypass bridge near Ben Eddings Auto Group for about a week with no results.

Moore says searchers covered about 12-15 miles of Crooked Creek, more than once in some cases.

The Boone County Sheriff says about 200 people were out in the search Sunday and a good many of them were volunteers. As people had to go back to work Monday, the number of volunteers had dropped, but there were still about 20 people on the creek Monday.

Moore says they had covered the creek to near Harmon Road, which is about the border with Marion County, although some people in kayaks had gone as far down the creek as Pyatt.

Searchers were leaving no stone unturned. Moore says they are paying special attention to debris piles being dismantled by hand and with an excavator. Dog teams were still being brought in and Game and Fish Commission divers were still searching deeper pools along the creek.

Moore says he feels their bodies might not have gone very far, but they are not taking anything for granted, including some of the muddy deposits still in the lake.

The incident command center inside the Office of Emergency Management building was a flurry of activity Monday with maps covering the walls and aerial photos displayed on large televisions.

When asked if the effort was frustrating for searchers after more than a week, Moore says they had a job to do and were continuing forward.

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