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Missing man's family still searching despite few leads

MATTHEW PUGHMore than a month after Matthew Pugh disappeared from his group home in Hillsboro, family members of the Forest Grove native continue an agonizing search for their son, nephew and grandson.

“It’s the not knowing that’s taking the biggest toll,” Pugh’s aunt, JoLynne Simshaw, said Sunday. “It’s not looking good, obviously.”

Since Sept. 26, the day Pugh was reported missing, Simshaw, along with Pugh’s mother Tina House, another aunt from Washington state, and others have blanketed western Washington County with flyers asking for clues to Matthew’s whereabouts.

But Sgt. Bob Ray, spokesman for the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, said Friday that although “detectives are still actively working the case,” WCSO has received very little in the way of solid leads.

“We don’t have much to go on,” Ray said.

An emailed plea from Beverly Brown, Pugh’s aunt who lives in Washington, reached the Hillsboro Tribune last week.

“I am writing to ask for your help in reaching the public with a very important plea from our family. We would like to ask the local businesses in the area to look through any security footage they have from between 7:30 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 25, to approximately the end of September,” Brown wrote.

“We are looking for any footage that could possibly include Matt alone or with someone or his car, and we are more than willing to screen and/or return surveillance tapes if necessary.”

Brown also asked that landowners in the western section of Washington County “search their properties for any evidence that could relate to the case.”

Anyone with information should call the WCSO at 503-846-2700. A Facebook page, “Help Find Matthew Pugh,” has also been set up and has more than 730 “likes.”

A gofundme.com campaign is offering $150 for tips that lead to Pugh.

Simshaw said the family just wants answers. She has received phone calls from several acquaintances of Pugh’s “saying all kinds of disheartening things.” Pugh, who had been in recovery in recent years after scrapes with the law and drug and alcohol abuse, might have “gotten in with the wrong crowd” the night his green 1994 Ford Taurus was found with its engine running off Tongue Lane near Plum Tree Court south of Hillsboro, Simshaw said.

Pugh, a welder, had been working at RDF&P in Cornelius for about five months before he disappeared.

Still, the family isn’t giving up hope that Pugh could be found alive.

“We’ve got about 10,000 flyers out in Forest Grove, Gaston, Hillsboro, Aloha and Tanasbourne,” she said.


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