Family Seeks Help in Search for Missing Grayson Man
The family of 42-year-old Derek Buford of Grayson, Ga. is worried he could have been in a single car wreck on the way to work on Aug. 23 and is lying somewhere, possibly seriously injured or worse.
Derek Woodston Buford, 42, of Grayson, Ga. is believed to have left for work as usual on the morning of Aug. 23 but he never arrived at his Covington place of employment. Buford's family is currently desperately seeking help in their search for him.
Susan Watts, a family friend, has been helping the family in their search for information.
“They are feeling frustrated, and are wondering if maybe a major news station with traffic helicopters could fly over the area and perhaps see his vehicle – if it was a single car accident,” Watts said.
Members of the family have been out driving all the possible routes he could have taken to his place of work. He is an employee at Southeastern Builders Supply, 1186 Clark St. in Covington. Watts said they have driven all the possible routes from his home in Grayson to Covington, but so far there has not been any sign of him or the Silver 2005 Tribute he was believed to be driving.
The Gwinnett County Police Department has opened up a missing person’s docket and are looking into Buford’s disappearance.
“The family doesn’t have any experience on how to coordinate a search,” Watts stated. “If anyone knows an organization that does this or who could advise them – they need all the help they can get.”
The missing persons report was filed by Buford’s mother, who shares a home with him in Grayson. In the report, she told police that she did not see her son around 9 p.m. on Wednesday, which is when she went to bed. He wasn’t there when she woke up on Thursday morning however she was not concerned at this time as Buford usually left for work early in the morning. When she received a call from his employer at about 9 a.m. telling her he had not arrived at work, she became worried because “he was always very punctual.”
According to the report, Buford's mother first called all area hospitals because Buford had recently been discharged after being treated for “heart related issues.” She also was concerned about the fact that he did not have his medication with him. Buford’s name has been entered into the National Crime Information Center Database and Gwinnett Police are working it as a missing person case. According to Cpl. Ed Ritter, public information officer for GCPD, there is no further information at this time.
In the meantime, the family is doing everything they can to canvas the area that Buford might have taken on his way to work on Thursday morning.
Buford has two teenage children, a son and a daughter. Watts said they are being assisted in the search by their mother, Grace Buford, who no longer lives with Buford but remains a good friend. Derek Woodston Buford is reported to be on medication for a heart condition and it is believed that he does not have his medication with him. His phone has reportedly been switched off since Wednesday but family members say that isn’t unusual since he often forgets to put it on charge overnight.
Anyone with any information is asked to call 911 or contact the Gwinnett County Police at 770-513-5000. The family is also asking for help from any persons or organizations with experience in organizing searches for missing persons.