LAFAYETTE, LA (FOX44) — The volunteer search group that formed the day Mickey Shunick was discovered missing is suspending its search. Organizers made the announcement today and say this isn’t the end, but rather a way of regrouping.
“We’re not stopping, this isn’t the end, we just have to change directions,” Ashley Says, a close friend of Mickey Shunick and one of the organizers of the volunteer search group, explained.
The Find Mickey Shunick Now Facebook page was launched on Saturday, May 19 after Shunick’s family filed an official missing person police report. Since then the page has gained over 22,000 fans and is largely responsible for the organization of the grass-roots search effort.
“At this time the volunteer portion of the search effort is indefinitely suspended, however it is still ongoing,” read an official statement on the Find Mickey Shunick Now Facebook page. “This suspension includes food, beverage, and material donations of any kind as well as manpower coming in to participate in the search effort.”
The discovery of new information is what’s fueling the decision to suspend the volunteer search effort.
“With all the new leads we’ve gotten from the discovery of her bike and the exit, we feel like we’ve exhausted the search in Lafayette,” Says explained. “It’s not that the case is dying down, we’re just trying to figure out where our priorities are and where they are needed.”
Official volunteer organizations continue to work in conjunction with law enforcement agencies. Also, benefits are taking place in the Lafayette area to raise funds for the continued search effort by those groups will remain active.
“This suspension however does not include benefits that are already scheduled to take place,” the online statement noted. “We would also like to reiterate that upon the conclusion of the search effort, all supplies and money in all donation accounts will be given to non-profit organizations.”
What will not stop is the social media effort that propelled this case to a national spotlight.
“We encourage everyone to reblog, repost, reshare, and keep talking about Mickey. We cannot begin to express the gratitude and affection we have for everyone who helped us in any way. We would not have gotten anywhere close to where we are today without you guys.
"Thank you so much from the bottom of all of our hearts and please keep checking in with us. We’ll do our best to keep you updated."