@@@ Please make sure and review comments posted by my cousin Jeff McKay. A future post will give more information. @@@
Volunteer searching continued on March 18th my 19th birthday. Our family had been staying in Wagram overnight with Shaws and McKay relatives. We all were in shock and I stayed at the house to give mother my love and support. Since I have a son of my own I can now imagine the heartbreak my parents felt as they walked those days. It was devastating to have their first born missing.
The Lumber River search continued with more dragging of the river. My cousin Jeff and my Uncle Sandy were part of the canoe teams searching along and in the river.
Jeff and Uncle Sandy made a shocking discovery about one-half mile from his accident scene. They found a jacket snagged on a log. Jeff recalls it was a Carolina Blue warm up or un-zipped running jacket with white stripes down the sides.
I do recall seeing the jacket and shedding a great deal of tears. Jeff and Uncle Sandy brought it to our cousin’s house where we staying. Jeff reminded me I looked at the jacket and
said ” That’s the jacket I gave Edwin for Christmas.” I had forgotten saying those words. Dad did not think it was Edwin’s and if so he was of the opinion it was in the water about two weeks. Right now I am trying to imagine what the jacket really looked like. I have always been told to go with first thoughts and it was my first thought.
Jeff was asked to take a ride in the Army National Guard helicopter to signal from the air where to direct all searches to the area where the jacket was found. No other clues were located. The river was very high and the search began to slow as the helicopters left the area.
Several news clippings report the jacket may have been there more than a couple of weeks. I am unclear as to how length of time in water was determined and do not recall any specific testing being conducted on the clothing. I remain unsure where the Carolina Blue jacket has been stored.
Many more questions and uncertainties remained.