Olson Search Continues; Lafayette Friends Mobilize

Searchers looking for any clue to the whereabouts of 2010 Acalanes grad Brett Olson take to the air and waterways adjacent to the Sacramento River again Thursday.


Classmates from Brett Olson's Lafayette high school gathered on a hillside near Acalanes High Wednesday and painted his name with flour in a show of support for the Cal Poly Obispo student -- missing now for four days after leaving a party of river rafters near Chico on Sunday.

The search for the popular 2010 Acalanes High School graduate resumed along the banks of the Sacramento River again Thursday as friends and family members -- desperate for any shred of evidence to Olson's whereabouts -- mounted a massive informational effort to draw attention to his case.

Michael and Elizabeth Olson remained in Chico Wednesday, along with his brother, Luke, handing out fliers with pictures of Brett and his description on the front. Hundreds of Olson's friends from Acalanes and Cal Poly volunteered to join the search effort but have been turned away due to the rough terrain where he is believed lost and a desire to keep inexperienced searchers from becoming lost themselves.

Photos of Olson taken the day of the floating party known as the Chico Float have been sent to Lamorinda Patch, with friends asking that searchers be aware of Olson's distinctive shorts. He was not believed to have been wearing the shirt in the picture when he left friends at Beer Can Beach, a popular haul-out, party spot on the banks of the Sacramento.

Sheriff's deputies coordinating the air and ground search for the missing college student are using everything from search dogs to helicopter-borne infrared sensing equipment. Hopes are that Olson was in an area of dense scrub near where he is believed to have left the river with friends at about 1 p.m. Sunday.

SevenMary7 September 06, 2012 at 10:10 PM
Interesting that they didn't pick him up on FLIR. Are the dogs working any active tracks? They must have his clothes he didn't take on the trip.
Michael Taylor September 07, 2012 at 02:21 PM
The information effort has been massive but it will still take searchers on the ground to bring this man home. Hoping for the best.
Nancy Lee September 07, 2012 at 08:38 PM
Social media has its uses. Now if we can only get it to put on boots and gloves and go looking for someone. I hope this boy is found soon and I know people want to do well by him, but it will take more than a tweet.
lamorinda mom September 07, 2012 at 09:09 PM
News reports say brush in area is so dense, inexperienced people trying to do SAR run the risk of becoming lost so they are not encouraging random people to show up and help. Really tough situation.
Danna Wright September 08, 2012 at 02:39 PM
This is today's appeal for volunteers, per Shane Wright, one of the volunteer organizers: WE WANT AS MANY PEOPLE POSSIBLE TO MEET AT THE STARBUCKS AT 246 BROADWAY STREET IN DOWNTOWN CHICO AT 10 AM. IF YOU WERE THINKING OF COMING UP TO HELP, WE CAN USE ALL THE HELP WE CAN GET. We will be organizing groups to cover different sections of the farmers market, spreading awareness and fliers. The fliers we will have available will be updated with the $10,000 dollar reward. We believe this added motivation will cause a lot more pro-activity among the Chico Locals. THEN WE WILL HAVE A SECOND MEETING AT 1:00pm AT THE SAME STARBUCKS. IF YOU CANNOT MAKE IT BY 10, PLEASE MAKE IT UP BY 1. At the second meeting we will organize activities for the rest of the day. Again, the Olson family cannot express how thankful they are for the massive support. Keep the love flowing!
Danna Wright September 09, 2012 at 11:54 AM
Update: The reward is now $50,000 and they need help in Chico still. This is today's (Sunday 9/9/12) announcement: ATTENTION EVERYONE IN CHICO: Today's search is going to be completely revolved around the lead Jason Conrad gave us. WE ARE GOING TO CHANGE THE LOCATION OF OUR MEETING TO AT SAFEWAY ON 1016 WEST SACRAMENTO AVENUE (next to walgreens, corner of nord and west sac) AT 10:00am SO WE ARE CENTRAL TO THE LOCATION BRETT WAS LAST SPOTTED. WE ARE WORKING SIDE BY SIDE WITH THE POLICE, SO OUR SEARCH WILL BE EXTREMELY ORGANIZED AND EFFICIENT. IT IS IMPERATIVE THAT EVERYONE SHOWS UP TO OUR EVENT AT 10:00am INSTEAD OF SEARCHING ON THEIR OWN. OUR DIRECTION AND LEADERSHIP WILL VASTLY IMPROVE CHANCES OF FINDING BRETT. If you have been a leader in our previous volunteer searches, expect a call in the morning, and prepare to come early. Thank you all, and keep the prayers and positivity flowing! http://www.facebook.com/events/113674542116042/?context=create


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