A pilot who went missing in 2013 may still be alive, his family has said.
U.S. missionary Jerry Krause was presumed to be dead after he disappeared during a flight from South Africa to Mali in April 2013, Newsweek reports. Authorities in South Africa said that Jerry had perished in a crash after he wasn't heard from for two months.
Now, years after the missionary's disappearance, his family has said that new information leads them to believe Jerry is still alive and in Africa.
"Jerry Krause, a U.S. citizen, was kidnapped on April 7th, 2013 while flying a Beechcraft 1900C from South Africa to Mali. All contact was lost on his approach to Sao Tome, a small island off of the coast of Africa. No concrete evidence of Jerry or his airplane were located during the first two months of investigations," said the Krause family in a Facebook post on the group Find Jerry. "Nevertheless, the South African Civil Aviation Authority (the governing authority over the aircraft incident) published their official report that Jerry Krause crashed and that Jerry Krause was dead. The Krause family did not believe that Jerry was dead, but they had no evidence to support their belief."
The Krause family said that the situation has changed and new information on Jerry's whereabouts has emerged.
"First, the South African Civil Aviation Authority has removed their official report, which is a public record, due to 'new evidence' being provided (via email with Albert Phuti Morudi, the Director of Investigations, April 5th, 2016)," reads the family's post. "Although we have sought to learn what this new evidence is, we have been denied access to it. The airline incident was re-opened and has yet to be re-posted. Second, Jerry has been seen and found to be alive. The U.S. government knows Jerry’s location. However, the Department of Defense has not had the correct authorization to act on this information."
The Krause family is now urging friends and users online to contact senators to tell President Donald Trump or Vice President Mike Pence to authorize the Department of Defense to retrieve Jerry and get him back home.
"We're ready," said Jerry's youngest daughter, Jessica Krause. "We're tired. It's just been a long time."
"We had airplanes doing searches, we had boat searches, we had a reward on the island for any information," said Jessica of the search for her father, according to WCCO.
"God knows where Jerry is," said wife Gina Krause at the time of her husband's disappearance, according to The Associated Press. "I know I serve a God who can do the IMPOSSIBLE."