Andy Lathrop,the Wisconsin 20 year old , has been missing in Japan for two weeks now. The family is thinking that there may have been an abduction in the case, as opposed to drowning which was initially thought.
They have set up a website, www.findandy.org, and are planning a fund raiser to cover family expenses for their trip to Japan.
MENASHA — Two special police detectives have been assigned to the search in Hakodate, Japan, for Andy Lathrop, the missing Menasha intern who vanished two weeks ago.
For family members who returned home Sunday after a week of searching for the 20-year-old Menasha man, news of the extra manpower was encouraging.
“It’s good to hear the news this morning that they’re not giving up,” said Andy’s father, Steven Lathrop, an electrician at a Menasha paper mill.
Thoughts that Andy fell victim to a climbing accident or possibly drowned have been lessened by the fact that his body has not washed ashore or been found in any of the extensive searches of the water and rocky beach area where he was last seen and the adjacent mountainous area.
Now, authorities may be exploring other options, including possible abduction.
“I think they’re looking now at a different area, that maybe he was taken,” said his mother Lesley Lathrop, an intensive care nurse in Appleton. “I just don’t feel that he’s still on that island; otherwise he’d be seen.”
Lathrop, who was supposed to return to the U.S. five days after he went missing Aug. 15, had finished his work as an intern with Labo International Exchange Foundation when he disappeared while traveling.