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Don’t forget Negrete, missing adults

By Daily Bruin Staff

Oct. 3, 2000 9:00 p.m.

Mary Negrete is the mother of Michael, the student who
disappeared last year.

By Mary Negrete

My name is Mary Negrete, and I am writing to urge all UCLA
students and all of their families, friends, and acquaintances to
support Kristen’s Act, HR 2780.

My son, Michael Negrete, is a missing person. A few months after
his 18th birthday, on Dec. 10, 1999, Michael vanished from Dykstra
Hall, his dorm at UCLA, and has not been found yet. His
disappearance is a mystery and a source of deep frustration and
sadness to all his family and friends.

At the time of his disappearance, we launched a massive search
for Michael. We asked for help from many missing persons
organizations, and were told by several, including the National
Center for Missing and Exploited Children, that Michael was over 18
and they could not list him on their national databases. He is
legally classified as an adult who does not need to be found by his
parents. But Michael is far from being ready to function as a
mature adult. When he vanished he was a young, first-year college
student, barely beginning his life and still very dependent on his
parents and family.

The most effective way to find Michael and other missing
“adults” is through massive publicity. There must be at
least one person in the world who knows what happened to Michael.
Imagine how many people would see him if his picture could be
distributed on mailers, milk cartons, and other flyers nationally.
We have tried to publicize his disappearance as much as possible
ourselves, but as a grieving family, our distribution network is
more or less a hit-or-miss. We need the help of national
organizations.

Kristen’s Act (HR 2780) is a bill introduced to the House
of Representatives in Washington by Sue Myrick, Republican
congresswoman from North Carolina. The bill is named in honor of
Kristen Modafferi, a North Carolina State student who vanished in
1997 a few weeks after her 18th birthday, and whose family was also
denied help from national organizations.

The legislation would authorize the attorney general to provide
grants to organizations attempting to locate missing adults. It
would also include expanding the National Center for Missing and
Exploited Children to help authorities locate people between 18 and
21 years of age at the time of their disappearance. Currently, the
center receives federal funding to assist only those under the age
of 18.

According to Sue Myrick, it is possible that the bill will be
voted on before Congress adjourns in October of this year.
Therefore, it is necessary that you write for support as soon as
possible. Our congressman from San Diego, Brian Bilbray, has
already signed on as co-sponsor of the bill.

I am asking as many people as possible to please send a note to
both their senators and congressmen in Washington urging support of
Kristen’s Act (HR 2780).

Names and addresses of senators and congressmen may be found at
www.Congress.com.

More information about Kristen’s Act may be found at:
www.nmco.org/legislation/,
www.house.gov/myrick/kristen.htm,
or www.modlink.com.

More information about Michael Negrete may be found at www.FindMikeNow.com.

Michael was a wonderful, intelligent and talented boy. One day
we were making plans with him to come home from college for the
Christmas holidays, and the next he was gone for no reason. I am
sure you can imagine the anguish we feel and the depth of our
desperation at the loss of our son. Please help us by supporting
Kristen’s Act (HR 2780).

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