TUPPER LAKE - The family of missing teen Colin Gillis has set up a Facebook page meant to be a clearinghouse of factual information about the ongoing search for him.
The search was downgraded to "limited continuous" status by the state Department of Environmental Conversation last week, but Gillis' father, John Gillis, said numerous volunteers have "refused to quit," according to a press release from the Tupper Lake Chamber of Commerce, which is helping to organize the clearinghouse effort.
The goal is to collect geographical information from people who have been walking roads and checking camps and secondary homes in the region.
The information will be used to create a database of thoroughly searched areas and serve to identify locations yet to be covered.
The idea came from family members who saw firsthand the systematic approach and tremendous effort put forth by DEC rangers and state troopers during the extensive search involving hundreds of volunteers.
People involved in the effort are still working on the logistics of how they will systematically collect and record the information, like what people should report and how they should report it. Contact information will be announced soon.
Colin Gillis is described as a white male, 6 feet, 1 inch tall, weighing about 170 pounds with blond hair and blue eyes. State police said he was last seen wearing a white shirt with black stripes, blue jeans and red sneakers.
Anyone with information is asked to call state police's Ray Brook headquarters at 518-897-2000.
As part of the effort, a Facebook page has been created called "Colin Gillis Search Updates."
"Our goal is to keep the momentum moving for the Gillis family and to create a space that will allow the public to stay updated on any new information," reads the page. "It is part of an overall effort for a coordinated approach."
Page administrators ask that people be respectful and only contribute productive commentary, and warn that they will remove posts if they don't follow the guidelines.
"The goal is to have the Facebook page be the hub for purely factual, updated information," said Noelle Short, who is helping to organize the effort.
Gillis, 18, was last seen in the early morning hours of March 11 on the side of the road between Tupper Lake and Piercefield. He was home on spring break from SUNY Brockport and left a party on foot.