McClain family holds onto hope for son’s safety

NASHUA – Almost six months ago Michael McClain went missing while with friends in Nashua, and while no further details have been released by the Nashua Police Department, his family continues to hold out hope that he is still alive.

Saturday morning, with the help of the nonprofit LostNMissing, McClain’s family and friends took part in a Shining Hope event at Greeley Park – a candle light vigil and a campaign meant to make the public aware that Michael has yet to be found.

Those who remain hopeful that McClain will be found donned t-shirts with his name, picture and the hashtag BringMikeHome on the back and, after sharing breakfast and saying prayers together, they set off to distribute fliers.

McClain, a resident of Manchester, stands 5 feet 10 inches, has tattoos on his hands and arms, wears braids and has brown eyes – but he is often seen wearing green contacts. He went missing shortly after he and his friends went out to the Tropical Lounge, located at 14 W. Hollis St. on night of Saturday, April 20.

There was an altercation that took place at the establishment during that time, though it was reported that McClain was not involved in the incident.

Both McClain’s parents, Paula Judkins and Edward McClain, expressed genuine hope that their son is still out there.

“I don’t feel that he’s gone, I know for sure that he’s alive,” said Judkins.

Judkins said there is s a frustration growing with local law enforcement, who she said has not given the family any updates regarding the investigation of her missing son, but have written him off as just another missing black man.

“I want them to make my son a priority. I don’t want them to rule him out because he is black,” she said. “I want them to make him a priority because he is a resident of New Hampshire.”

Edward also expressed frustration with the police. While he didn’t go into detail, he said the authorities have made up their mind about what happened to his son, and instead of bringing proof, they have seemingly stalled their investigation while not looking into other possible outcomes.

“They have yet to prove anything… Basically,” McClain said, “they have an assumption of what they believe happened to my son, but they haven’t got any concrete proof.”

“There are other avenues that have presented themselves to us that we presented to them that would contradict what they believe,” he continued.

“We have yet to recover a body, not a hat,” he added, “anything that is my Michael’s they have yet to acquire.

While Edward believes the police hasn’t fully looked into his son’s disappearance, he said making the public aware through campaigns such as Saturday’s event at Greeley, as well as through social media platforms, is sure will help to bring his son home after an ordeal he said no family should have to go through.

“It seems like we’re hitting a dead wall,” Edward said, regarding the NPD investigation. “Us pounding the concrete, reaching out to people… everyone on Facebook and social media – all types of platforms – I think is the best avenue that we have got so far.”

“This is nightmare that we’re facing right now. It is something no family should have to go through, this is the worst of the worst,” he continued, “what we’re going through as a family, this can happen to anyone, so we are just going to keep hope alive and we’re going to find my son and bring him home.”

LostNMissing coordinated the event Saturday, bringing the fliers and hosting the Shining Hope vigil. Cyndi Caron, the nonprofit’s founder, said it’s important to continue to keep the public informed while authorities and the family continue to look for a missing person – citing the fact that many times that is what helps bring someone home.

“Generally it’s usually the public that makes a recognition of a missing person,” Caron said, “and the only way the public is going to know is through the media, missing persons posters and events that the family hold.”

She said that through the event, they will be able to keep assisting McClain’s family to keep his name and face at the forefront of people’s minds.

“We are assisting the family. The purpose of the Shining Hope event is to make the public aware that Michael is still missing,” she said, “we want to be sure that all of Southern New Hampshire know’s Mike’s face.”

Nashua Police could not be reached for an update or comment by the time of press.

Mathew Plamondon can be reached at 594-1244 or mplamondon@nashuatelegraph.com, @telegraph_MatP.