Local News

Family of missing soldier holding on to hope

Posted April 20, 2012 1:29 p.m. EDT
Updated April 21, 2012 7:47 a.m. EDT

— The brother of a Fort Bragg soldier who has been missing for a week said Friday that the family remains confident that she is alive and will be found, despite the fact that police have no good leads in her disappearance.

"There is no doubt in my mind that we are going to find her alive," said Matt Henson of his sister, Pfc. Kelli Bordeaux.

Last Friday, Bordeaux, 23, of St. Cloud, Fla., was last seen around 1:20 a.m. leaving a bar on Ramsey Street in Fayetteville called Froggy Bottoms.

Officials at Fort Bragg reported her missing to Fayetteville police on Monday, when she didn't show up for duty.

Investigators were searching the area near the bar and interviewing patrons on Friday after a two-day search of a pond about 8 miles away, which was prompted by a tip, turned up nothing.

Fayetteville Police Chief Tom Bergamine said that detectives are still treating Bordeaux's disappearance as an active missing person's case but that they have "grave concerns" about her well-being.

A man who told police that he gave Bordeaux a ride home from the bar was arrested Friday on a charge of failing to provide his new address to Cumberland County authorities because he is a registered sex offender.

Police haven't said whether the man, Nicholas Holbert, is a person of interest in her disappearance.

Members of Bordeaux's family, including her husband of two years, have been in Fayetteville for several days to aid in the search.

"Nobody's losing hope. We're still looking every day," Henson, said during a news conference Friday.

Henson said he was frustrated by the slow progress in the case but said he was confident that investigators were doing all they could to find his sister.

"It's so unimaginable to wake up every day and this is the reality," he said. "It's a horrible thing, but now you just hope that she's being held hostage somewhere."

Bordeaux is a combat medic with the 44th Medical Brigade, and Henson said she was happy with her life in the Army.

"Kelli, she wanted to excel in life. That was her thing. She was good at everything she did," he said.

Her two-year marriage to Mike Bordeaux also was solid, Henson said. Mike Bordeaux, who isn't in the military, was in Florida at the time of his wife's disappearance.

Henson said he last communicated with his sister on April 11, when they exchanged text messages. He urged reporters not to cast his sister in a negative light, including suggesting that she went absent without leave, saying she was "more than a story" to her family.

"You don't go AWOL from your family," he said, noting that she would have contacted their mother at some point in the past week if she had simply run away from the military.

Police have set up a hotline, at 910-433-1114, for people to provide leads in Kelli Bordeaux's disappearance to investigators.