Saturday, November 27, 2010

The Burden of Expense Falls on Families of the Missing

By Glendene Grant, Jessie Foster's Mom

Editor's note:  This article is for those of the general public who think "this can't happen to me."  Life has a funny way of changing in the blink of an eye for a victim of any crime, but for a mother whose child is missing, whether that child is 5 or 50, life becomes a totally new reality.  Not only does a mother spend every waking hour searching, but the act of searching comes at a huge financial expense for families and communities, one that many can not afford.  There are no victim assistance funds set up for families of the missing, they must carry that burden alone, only with the support and aid of  missing persons organizations and private citizens who care and support their efforts.  It's too heavy for some.  Glendene Grant speaks not only for herself, but for the thousands of families with missing loved ones trying to get by in a bad economy with this added expense.  What would you do?

I urge you to leave comments with ideas of solutions.  Glendene Grant and those in her position have many supporters and those who pray for them, however, now they need concrete solutions, so if you are inclined to leave a comment for her, let it be something that also contains an idea on how to lift some of the financial burden so she and other families of the missing can figure out how to survive.

Most of you know that I am the mother of a missing woman. You know that Jessie Foster is an international endangered missing woman and the victim of human trafficking. But what you may not know is this . . .

Emotionally: we are completely spent – overdrawn, as you can imagine.

Spiritually: we are fortunate to have many people who are there for us, helping us stay strong.

Financially: we are drained . . . barely hanging on by the skin of our teeth and in some instances, we have lost our hold.

I would appreciate it so much, if somehow, the Canadian government could help us out with the costs involved with having a missing loved one for nearly 5 years - FOR NEARLY HALF A DECADE!! The income stops, (temporarily for some and permanently for others . . . who can work when this happens?) but the bills don't. The everyday bills keep piling up.
And then there are all the new bills – for private investigators; trips to meet with investigators or to identify bodies; money for paper and ink to make posters; hundred if not thousands of long-distance phone calls; you name it, we have to pay for it. It is very overwhelming.But who do I have to turn to? No one. Sadly, there is no one to help me. 

Thankfully we have done a lot of fundraising, but it is a lot to keep asking of my small community. We have done most of the fundraising here in Kamloops, BC, with a few in Calgary, AB and Edmonton, AB – there was even a yard sale in Surrey, BC back in the summer of 2006. It has certainly helped, but it is just not enough.

I have spent all my money and much of my time trying to find my own daughter and to prevent this from happening to others. I volunteer my time to go into high-schools with Crime Stoppers to educate the students about human trafficking. I do all I can to combat this horrific crime, and then I go home to no groceries in my home; rent not paid; BC Hydro, Teresan Gas, Shaw Cable & Internet and Telus threatening to shut off  my services (Telus did disconnect my long distance due to their own error – and without crediting me for this horrible inconvenience, so I finally got rid of them and I have got Shaw phone now). I have no credit cards, because I had no money to pay them and so now I also have to deal with my credit being in the toilet.

The list goes on and on, and until now, I have not sat around whining and complaining much about it, but I do feel that I have the right to sometimes, so I am letting it out now. I am tired of not being able to cook a decent meal or make some cookies because my grandchildren are coming over, or for the life of me - TO BUY MY BEAUTIFUL GRANDCHILDREN A BIRTHDAY PRESENT. I can't even do that at this time of my life. After years . . . after decades of working and providing for my family, I now cannot even provide for myself.

PLEASE, help me get some justice for Jessie and some help for me. I really can't keep on going like this, but I know I will. No matter what, I WILL FIND JESSIE, OR DIE TRYING.
Again, thank you all for your time and prayers, and remember, with Christmas coming, we have another hurdle to get over. Christmas 2005 was the last day that I ever laid my eyes on my daughter. Christmas is hard enough when you have a missing child, but with that day marking the ‘anniversary’ (for lack of a better word), sadly, it can be one of the worst days of the year. And without money to pay bills, there is certainly no money to celebrate the holiday.

I am putting my Christmas 2010 message to Jessie below.

Sincerely, Jessie’s mom Glendene Grant.

To my Jessie-Bessie:
2010 . . . another Christmas without you here. Five Christmases of not knowing but never forgetting. I will always remember my last sight of you, it was on Christmas Day 2005 – SIX CHRISTMASES AGO. You were going into the Kamloops airport and you flew away, to the fate that awaited you, a fate that no one knew or saw coming, except maybe you, my girl.

We think of you and talk about you every day – I even talk TO you almost every day. We all miss you so much, but your sisters miss you like only a sister can. Crystal needs her little sister back, she needs you to be there in her life again. And your little sisters are both mothers now. Katie has a little boy Jacobus James, or JJ, who is almost 2 and Jennee has two little girls, Maddison Louise, or Maddie, is almost 3 and Ilianna Joy, or Ili, is almost 1. They are the most wonderful, beautiful, joyful little children you could ever know. Your little sisters need their big sister Jessie to know their babies. Their babies know you, sweetie. They love you already, and we promise you, no matter what, they will know you as we do.

We all love you baby and we all need you back. And always know this, sweet daughter of mine, I WILL FIND YOU . . . OR DIE TRYING.I love you baby-girl, love Mom. xoxoxoxox


  1. Thank you for posting this. Jessie's mom Glendene.

  2. Comment I posted on Peace4:


    You always have the right to say how you feel. More families need to educate law enforcement and the public on just what happens to the families of the missing. Maybe then LE would work these cases harder and the public would do all they can to keep the awareness up. If the families stay quiet and act like good little boys and girls how will changes ever be brought about?

    Our governments should have a fund that helps the families when a loved one goes missing. With 100,000 missing and over 1/2 million loved ones of the missing affected these are numbers greater than a natural disaster. I still face the affects daily, I lost 2 homes, work 2 jobs, and I too cannot buy a gift for my daughters or my grandchildren for birthdays or Christmas. Creditors, banks, mortgage companies, lawyers and judges don't undertand the word "missing."

    Keeping Jessie and you and your family in my prayers.


  3. I myself have gone through a simular situation, i pray every day that you can trust that the good will prevail.. my heart is with your family and her as well ..

  4. I am very sorry that you have to go thru this--no parent should have to.Unfortunately that is the reality of our world today.Thankfully i have my angel laying in bed right now as i am here reading your story and also knowing of 2 children that are also missing right now--12 yr old linsey and 8(i think is his age) kyron.As far as a way to help--I have seen recently that families set up an account and publicize it and what its for.Thats the only thing i know.

  5. I am so sorry that you are going through this. Losing a child is a unimaginablee thing that no one knows the pain of until it happens to them. Will keep you in my prayers.

  6. I am a father, I can feel the fear I would feel, however I don't think I could go on. When I did the expenses would be one hugh obstacle. You want your daughter back and all I can offer is some form of understanding to your battle. If I learned anything in life it is that people can make changes when thier voices are heard. Nobody can read your story, or your beautiful Christmas card, without wanting to help if given a chance. Can't a petition be started around your circumstances to have bills written off or picked up by the companies that supply those services? Or a Jessie Foster initiative to have local services provided. If you want more ideas along this line I can be reached at, I am Dave Nelson, thank you for sharing your heart.

  7. Sad when the family must do the work that should be done by police.


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