Rachel Conger


Amber's Speech for the CUE Center: On the Road to Remember National Tour

(This is a speech that Amber gave today at the CUE Center "On the Road to Remember" National Tour rally stop for Rachel. We, Amber's family, would like to say how proud we are of Amber and that we will not give up looking for Rachel! We are thankful to The Henry Countian for their continuing coverage of events pertaining to Rachel, the CUE Center for adding Rachel to their national tour and URSAR for coming up to search for Rachel at the beginning of August and their ongoing efforts to find Rachel!)

I would like to thank everyone for coming today and a special Thank You to the CUE Center for Missing Persons for adding my mother, Rachel Conger, to their Road to Remember Tour.I would like to tell you about my mom. She’s so much more than just a face on a poster. She loved riding horses and motorcycles, and listening to country music. She collected ceramic frogs. She liked reading-especially books written by Stephen King, Dean Koontz, and James Patterson, but she sometimes read nonfiction as well. My mom loved animals. We had miniature dachshunds and she treated them like babies. She was always picking up stray cats and dogs and bringing them home to take care of because she felt so sorry for them.

Mama loved children too. I have seen her sit down on the floor at the doctor’s office to play with them. My mother was a really nice person and tried to teach me to be too. She did not believe in gossiping about other people. Once when we were in Wal Mart I made a nasty remark about someone and mama told me “if I couldn’t say something nice about someone then don’t say anything.” The she made me say something nice about everyone we walked by. I really miss my mom; we could talk to each other about anything. She was my best friend.

This summer my family, friends, and I have had several fundraisers to raise money for expenses for a professional search organization to come to Paris to search for my mother. A couple of weeks ago, United Response Search & Rescue, a search team from Texas came to Paris to search for my mother. Unfortunately, they did not find her, but I’m not giving up the search. While the search team was here they trained some volunteers in ways to search for missing people and we plan to continue the searching until my mother is found. We hope to be able to continue the fundraising efforts and buy equipment that will aid the search for my mother as well as others who may go missing.

Next Saturday, September 6, beginning at 5PM, a benefit concert is being held for my mother at the Casey Jones Amphitheater in Jackson Tennessee. The benefit organizer and featured musician is Mary Elizabeth Murphy from Humboldt. In addition to Mary Elizabeth, there will be several other country and Christian bands playing. All proceeds from the concert are being donated to the Bring Rachel Home Fund. Please make plans to be there!


CUE Center: On the Road to Remember National Tour

Bring Rachel Conger Home

For Immediate Release
Email: bringrachelcongerhome@hotmail.com

CUE Center for Missing Persons
On the Road to Remember National Tour
Rally Stop Featuring Missing Paris, TN mother, Rachel Conger

The CUE Center for Missing Persons will set out on August 21 for their 5th Annual "On The Road to Remember Tour 2008" in honor of those who remain missing, homicide victims and the unidentified. The CUE Center for Missing Persons will be at a rally stop for Rachel Conger at Memorial Park (Maurice Fields Dr.) in Paris, TN on Sunday, August 31, 2008 from 2:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. The Henry County Sheriff’s Department will provide fingerprinting for ID kits for children at the rally stop. There will also be a balloon release to honor all missing persons. Also being featured on the CUE Center tour from Tennessee are: Tabitha Tuders, missing from Nashville, TN (missing since 04/29/03) and Frances "Franny" Graham of Coker Creek, TN (missing since 09/18/05). For more information contact CUE Center and see tour route schedule/information below;

National Tour - Quick Facts - Dates 8/21/08 thru 9/2/2008
Rally Stops – 30
States Traveling Through - 17
Cases Missing Featured – 110
Case Homicide Featured – 6
Tour Miles Traveled Total – 5,299

National Tour Purpose and Inspiration
The annual tour was created to generate new interest in cold cases of missing people across our nation. The inspiration came in 2004 from the case of North Carolina college student Leah Roberts, who had gone on a cross-country trip of self-exploration. Her wrecked and abandoned vehicle was found, but Leah is still missing. Leah's case went cold and interest faded until CUE volunteers set out on a grueling 14-day trip to retrace her route and inform the media of all those who were missing in the path of the tour. In the years to follow, it only seemed right to keep hope alive after families across the country voiced the need for more help and supported the tour.
National Tour Objective
The national road tour, called “On the Road to Remember,” is an awareness campaign that focuses on missing persons cases that have gone cold or have not received appropriate media coverage on the local level – much less the national level.. The tour, which travels through many states annually, provides that attention.
In all cases of missing people, it is vital to inform the public of the missing person’s circumstances quickly and to disseminate that information to the media and the public. In most cases where details are released immediately to the public through an organized campaign, the public brings forth information that aids in the investigation and or the location of the victim. The media plays a significant role in getting the word out on the behalf of the missing person and should be recognized as a vital resource to any investigation.
Interest in many of the cases we have featured in previous tours has been renewed. The media has learned about local cases they were unaware of; case investigations have been renewed, and searches conducted. Information has resulted in new leads in some cases, and has even helped identify an unknown decedent. Finally, some of the missing have been found, which is the main reason we conduct the tour every year, despite the toll it takes on our all-volunteer staff.
It is the belief of the CUE Center for Missing Persons that all investigations, the public, volunteers, and the media should work in collaboration on cases involving missing children and adults; until this happens, there will continue to be cases of the missing labeled “cold” or “inactive.”

# # #


United Response Search and Rescue

Many people have asked us over the last few days if we are disappointed that URSAR did not find Rachel. Of course we are disappointed. We desperately want Rachel to be found. But, are we disappointed in United Response Search and Rescue? Absolutely not. They put 110% effort in to locating Rachel. Every team member was caring toward Amber, and they really care about her situation. They traveled here to try and locate Rachel. They did their absolute best and that is all that we wanted. I wanted to state that under no circumstances are we disapppointed in URSAR.

They are very focused and very driven at what they do. They have a goal in mind, which is to find a missing person. But are they cold and callous, with disregard to the family as they go about attaining their goal? No. The URSAR team members that I met (and I am sure that this is true for every member that they have) were very warm and friendly. They care about Amber and what she is going through. The United Response Team equipped us with the knowledge that we need to keep searching for Rachel.

We wanted to let the team members of United Response Search and Rescue know how much we truly appreciate them taking time out of their lives to come up here and search for Rachel. You cannot ask for a better group of people than the URSAR Team. I don't feel bad about saying that they are the best group of people that I pray that I never have to recommend to anyone!


Interview with Amber on WPSD & WBBJ

We would like to thank both WBBJ & WPSD for their moving and emotional interviews yesterday with Amber. Everyone that has interviewed Amber in the last month has been so caring and compassionate with her, and for that we are very grateful!

If you would like to read and see the interview with WPSD: Click Here

If you would like to read the interview with WBBJ: Click Here

If you would like to see the interview with WBBJ: Click Here

I would like to add that WPSD & WBBJ have covered this story from the beginning, and they have shown so much interest and compassion (I hate to keep using that word, but it really does apply here) for what Amber is going through and we are very thankful to them for giving her a chance to tell her story!


United Response Search and Rescue- Aug. 9th Search for Rachel

The WONDERFUL people from United Response Search and Rescue headed up the volunteer search for Rachel Conger today. Despite tediously searching for Rachel in hot weather and rough terrain, unfortunately, Rachel was not located- which was a big disappointment to Amber, Rachel's family, the URSAR team and everyone searching. We had hoped for a much larger turnout than what we got, but we are extremely grateful to the great people that did show up and gave it their all to help find Rachel. Once again, we are grateful to everyone of you who stood side by side with us, helping to locate Rachel.

In conclusion, Thank You!

A BIG thanks also goes out to Holy Cross Catholic Church, Yoder Brothers Meat Processing, E.W. James & Sons, Henry County Sheriff's Department and the Salvation Army!

Radio Interview for "Thirty Minutes" on WCMT

Amber and I did a radio interview with Dave Chaffin on WCMT. I'll let everyone know when it's supposed to air!


Amber's Interview with WPSD

Amber did an interview with Jennifer Horbelt of WPSD, Newschannel 6 (http://www.wpsdtv.com/) and it will air tonight at 10 P.M., it will also air in the morning. Everyone, please check it out!

Link to Amber's Interview with WPSD

Details for Community Search for Rachel

Date: August 9th, 2008

Time: 8am

Place to meet: Holy Cross Catholic Church (Gymnasium)
1210 East Wood St.
Paris, TN 38242
(Amber spoke with a member of the URSAR team this afternoon, and found out that this location is subject to change- if it does, we will get the word out as fast as possible)

Minimum Age of Searchers: 18 and please bring ID

What to Wear: Long pants and no open toed shoes

Also, please wear sunscreen and bug spray (bug spray with DEET helps to repel ticks)

Volunteers Needed to Search for Rachel

I would like to ask everyone that is able to please come and help search for Rachel Conger on August 9, 2008. I know that it is Fair week in Henry County. I know that it is hot outside. I know that most people probably have other things that they would rather be doing. But, with that being said, I also know that my niece, Amber Simmons, desperately misses her mother and wants more than anything to know what happened to her mom. She spent her entire summer planning fundraisers to bring United Response Search and Rescue to Paris, to look for her mom, but we need volunteers to help us search for her. We need the community to come together, volunteer and help this thirteen-year-old child start to heal from all of the pain that has been thrown at her in the last five months.

If you are interested in helping to search for Rachel, please email me at bringrachelcongerhome@hotmail.com. We're afraid that we will not have much time to get the word out regarding the search, so please tell everyone you know, in hopes that we can get the 250-300 volunteers that we need on Saturday!


August 9th Search for Rachel Conger

More details to follow, but tonight we met with the United Response Search and Rescue Team and the search is planned for Saturday, August 9, 2008 at 8am. Amber and I will be calling tomorrow and getting a command center secured for that day. I will update the blog and contact media as soon as I know something more concrete. We need as many volunteers as we can get that day! Here is the basics for Saturday:

Date: August 9th, 2008
Time: 8am
Place to meet: Undetermined (as of right now)- but it will be in the East Wood St/Hwy 79 area of Paris and will serve as the Command Center on that day
What to Wear: Long pants and NO OPEN TOED SHOES
Minimum Age of Searchers: 18, and bring ID
Also, please wear sunscreen and bug spray (bug spray with DEET helps to repel ticks)

New Fundraising Totals as of 08/05/08

A BIG thank you goes out to Mr. Larry Hudgins and West Tennessee Auctions for raising $700 to go toward the Bring Rachel Home Search Fund. A complete story will be posted later on The Henry Countian.

fundraiser ideas