Hannah Upp, a beloved Montessori teacher, daughter, sister, and friend, has been missing since September 14, 2017, from St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands. She disappeared between the devastating hurricanes Irma and Maria. We have been looking for her since.
This campaign, initiated by Hannah’s mother, Barbara, and supported by loving family and friends, is to pay for the services of a professional private investigator to continue the search for Hannah. We have now exhausted the resources of the Virgin Islands Police Department, Search and Rescue, the Coast Guard, and the FBI. We are working to expand the investigation-- our best hope in the long run for locating Hannah.
All funds raised will go directly to this search. Thank you for considering your support. We are grateful for all donations of any size.
To stay updated on Facebook, please follow the Find Hannah Upp Facebook page .
Please see below for more information about Hannah, the search, the fundraiser, the timing, and how to donate offline.
Hannah Upp is a beloved Montessori teacher, daughter, sister, and friend who has lived in the US Virgin Islands since 2014. She suffers from medically rare Dissociative Fugues, infrequent episodes that result in long periods of amnesia. In two previous fugues, she forgot her identity and went missing but was eventually found.
Hannah went missing from Sapphire Beach in the East End of St. Thomas during the chaos between the unprecedented double damage of the two Category Five hurricanes, now referred to as Irmaria. Despite concentrated efforts from many and widespread support and awareness, Hannah still has not been found.
For more information about Hannah's story, please see this April 2018 New Yorker article by Rachel Aviv.
Having exhausted the resources of the Virgin Islands Police Department, Search and Rescue, the Coast Guard, and the FBI, exploring wider possibilities is essential. We are keenly aware that in the chaos of last September’s storms and devastation, many scenarios are possible.
We are working to expand the investigation-- our best hope in the long run for locating Hannah. This means casting a net even more widely, which requires increased and sustained professional support. We need to be able to support these broader resources we have sought and secured moving forward.
As the year mark approaches in September, we have no way of knowing the length of time Hannah’s condition and journey may fill. We are in this for the long haul.
WHAT YOUR CONTRIBUTION PAYS FOR
Itemized estimates for the $34,000 goal:
· Private investigative firm fees (estimated at $20,000)
· Expert forensic research $1500
· Administrative, technological, and organizational support $2500
· Legal fees $2500
· Printing and copying $4000
· Publicity and media $800
· Travel $2700
Should we be able to raise more than the goal, this would free up funds to be used for emerging investigative and travel needs we cannot predict at this time, as we do not know in which direction the search will lead.
For a full accounting of funds raised and used, please contact the fundraising bookkeeper, Julie Baber, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
You are more than welcome to donate offline by check. Please make all checks payable to Barbara Bellus and mail them to:
C/o Julie Baber
4605 Tutu Park Mall
Suite 133 Box 586
St. Thomas, VI 00802
WHO IS JULIE BABER?
Hello Hannah's supporters! My name is Julie Baber. I am a friend of Hannah's, and we worked at the VI Montessori School together. I currently live in the USVI. Barbara, Hannah's mother, has asked me to create and run this fundraiser since my background is in Development and Bookkeeping for non-profits. GoFundMe will be withdrawing the funds directly to Barbara's bank account, and both Barbara and I will oversee the bookkeeping for transparency. I thank you from the bottom of my heart for helping Barbara, and Hannah's friends, in this search.
Thank you all for your prayers, kind thoughts, and help in this search. Please take a moment to share this fundraiser with your friends and family. If you would like to print and distribute Hannah's missing poster, please click here.