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Searching for Ian — Martha Carr

Martha Carr’s column is distributed exclusively by Cagle Cartoons Inc., newspaper syndicate. E-mail her at Martha@caglecartoons.com.

Martha Carr’s column is distributed exclusively by Cagle Cartoons Inc., newspaper syndicate. E-mail her at Martha@caglecartoons.com.

My young cousin, Ian Burnet, age 22, is missing.

On Dec. 26, he left Virginia by bus to New York City, where he planned to celebrate New Year’s Eve. He sent his dad, Mark Burnet, a text saying he had gotten there just fine.

Then, on the night of Dec. 30, he sent a few texts to friends, saying he was about to head out, and disappeared into the night. No one can find any trace of him since that night.

There is a growing army of people who are out searching for signs of Ian, but so far, we haven’t found any clues to what happened after he stepped out of that apartment at 139th and Riverside.

However, we live in a culture where everyone is constantly taking pictures with their cell phones and watching what everyone else is doing. I know someone had to have seen my sweet cousin, Ian, with his mop of brown curls that shade pale green eyes.

My readers are great at sharing with me how their lives are going, and you have all prayed for me on more than one occasion, and I’ve gladly returned the favor for a few of you who’ve written to me.

Now I’m asking you once again. Take a good, long look at this link, http://newyorkstatemissingpersons.ning.com/photo/ian-burnet-new-york-city-new-york-2011, and share it with everyone you know, particularly in the Northeast.

Talk about Ian Burnet and share with friends that an engineering graduate student from my alma mater, Virginia Commonwealth University, who is looking forward to getting back to school, is missing.

Pray for his parents, my cousins, Nancy and Mark, his brother, Jamie, and his grandmother, Norie, and all the friends and family who love Ian and want him to come home.

Believe for the best possible outcome and keep talking. Someone out there doesn’t know they were walking right past someone we love very much, and could tell us more information. But, if enough of you share this story, they’ll know soon enough.

I believe in my readers because I’ve seen what you can do.

Let me tell you what I know of Ian so that you can know him a little better and have something to share with friends. We liked watching “The Colbert Report” together one spring as he was getting over a girlfriend, and I was getting over a bad economy. He’d tell me his views on politics and the world and I’d feel better about the state of things in America.

Ian would try, patiently, over and over again, to show me different things my computer could do to make my work life easier, but I didn’t retain any of it. Finally, he took over and did a few things to my laptop that made it run faster, smoother. I still have no idea what he did.

Whenever his brother, Jamie, was around the two of them would talk quietly to each other, just below the volume where older adults could hear anything good. They would laugh, start another story and slowly fade out of the room till they were upstairs again or down the hall in Norie’s spare room, typing away on keyboards, still talking.

I always stay with his grandmother, Norie, when I visit them, and Ian and Jamie at some point stop by to see us. They don’t even do that dropped-gaze thing that lets you know a younger member of your family is doing you a favor, but is counting the minutes. Both of them sit down and chat and hang with us for a while.

Share all of my stories of Ian Burnet and share the link with everyone you know, too. Tell everyone that a wonderful young man, who still has a lot to do, is missing and needs our help.

Come home and watch the “Colbert Report” with me again, Ian. My view of the world has been getting a little tired around the edges lately and I want to hear one more time that everything is actually alright.

Love you and miss you, cousin. More adventures to follow. Tweet me @MarthaRandolph, if you know anything about the disappearance or whereabouts of Ian Burnet. www.MarthaCarr.com.

Martha’s column is distributed exclusively by Cagle Cartoons Inc., newspaper syndicate. E-mail her at Martha@caglecartoons.com.