Local News

Sampson County family waits, hopes missing child comes home

Posted May 7, 2013
Updated May 8, 2013

— The incredible story of three Ohio women who escaped their kidnappers Tuesday after being locked away in a suburban Cleveland home for about a decade has given hope to a Sampson County family that has been waiting 13 years for their own miracle.

Tristen “Buddy” Myers was 4 years old when he disappeared from his Roseboro home on Oct. 5, 2000. His aunt reported last seeing him playing in front of the TV before she fell asleep. When she awoke, he and his dogs were missing. The dogs returned days later.

For his family, hope is a strong word.

“It’s been hard,” said his aunt, Donna Myers. “There’s not a day that goes by that we don’t think about him.”

Months before he went missing, Buddy moved to North Carolina from Louisiana to live with aunt and uncle, John Myers. Nearly three years after his disappearance, investigators in Chicago found a boy matching Myers' description, but DNA tests later determined the boy to be someone else.

“I still believe to this day that he is alive,” Donna Myers said.

Myers was elated to learn about the Ohio women - Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus and Michelle Knight – who were rescued after Berry was able to alert neighbors and get help.

After hearing about the story, Myers and other family members put yellow ribbons in front of their home in the hopes that Buddy will return safely. Buddy Myers Enhanced Ohio missing women case renews hope for Sampson family

The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children released a computer-generated image to the Myers family showing what Buddy might look like today in 2013. His mother died in 2004, Donna Myers said.

“It’s hard for me to realize that he’s not a 4-year-old little boy anymore,” she said.

Sampson County sheriff’s investigators said there have been no new leads in the case. They encourage anyone with information to give them a call.

“We don’t give up,” John Myers said.


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  • question_why May 8, 2013

    grnpnd7, I have the same thoughts. I hope he is still alive and found one day but the circumstances make this seem unlikely. I recall this in the news when it happened and thinking that the dogs coming home alone was not a good sign.

  • Country Girlz Have MORE fun May 8, 2013

    My son is two years younger than this little boy...I could not imagine him disappearing. I remember seeing this search air on the news. It is so upetting that a child could just vanish. I hope for this family the return of their child.

  • grnpnd7 May 8, 2013

    Sadly to say, I have never thought Buddy was still alive. I worked with animals for a long time, and I think he followed the dogs into the woods. Searchers worked within a certain radius because most people walk in circles when they are lost. But his dogs wouldn't have done that. I think he finally got scared, tired, and hungry; maybe even injured. I think the dogs stayed with him. The younger dog finally gave up and came back.
    The older dog stayed with him until the end, and maybe a few days afterwards.
    It was said that there was no signs of the dogs being in the woods. What were they supposed to be, plastered with leaves?
    I do believe that some day he will be found, beyond the five mile sweep; perhaps by hunters. I wish the Equusearch from Texas would come in with cadaver dog. As a mother, this has haunted me from day one. God bless you soul little boy.

  • Goalieman May 8, 2013

    Praying for the family!

  • kellypratz May 8, 2013

    has it been 13 years, I remember watching the news when this little boy went missing. I pray the same outcome for this family as the Ohio ladies.

  • lisa4 May 8, 2013

    Praying he will return home!!!

  • canucmypointofview May 8, 2013

    Praying for you!