37-year-old Joseph Herring walked out of the house in January, and hasn’t been seen since.
Family and friends have followed up leads, searched houses, even a cave, but there is no trace.
They say they desperately need answers.
It’s been three months since Joseph Herring vanished.
His mother and sister say there are tears every day.
On January 9, Herring’s wife, Amber, was dying in the hospital.
He was at home with their four children.
Their nine-year-old son had the flu.
“Joey came out in the kitchen and asked (his son) if he wanted something to drink,” said Michelle Williams, Joseph Herring’s mother. “So he got the pop out of the refrigerator, gave him a glass of pop, and then threw the pop bottle on the floor and walked out the door. And that’s the last anybody’s seen him.”
“He was under a tremendous amount of stress,” said Christine Herring, Joseph’s sister.
“I think it was just too much for him and he just left,” noted Michelle Williams, his mother.
Christine Herring says her brother battled addiction for years.
One of his children told her that their dad had been hearing voices from the basement.
“He was in and out of rehab,” said Christine. “So it’s possible that he got hold of something he’d never done before. And it really messed him up.”
Joseph Herring’s wife died 15 days after he left.
The children are now with Michelle, their grandmother.
She says they’re recovering.
“They do need closure,” Michelle said. “Everybody needs closure.”
“It would ease their hearts to know if he’s OK, if he’s out there, even if he needs time, or even if he’s not alive,” said Christine. “They just need to know something.”
His mother and sister have a message for him.
“Joey, if you’re out there, please just call one of us and let us know you are OK,” said his mother. “Even if you don’t want to come back.”
“Just call,” added his sister, “I mean, there’s nothing too big or too small that we can’t work through together.”
They say they are grateful to the Martins Ferry School system for their tremendous ongoing support for their family.
If anyone has information about what happened to Joseph Herring, you are urged to call (740) 340-8855.