Jennifer Kesse

Started by tramoore, June 12, 2008, 05:13:24 PM

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Since Orlando resident Jennifer Kesse vanished in January 2006, her father, Drew Kesse, has worked to keep her name and plight on TV and in the newspapers. He has attracted international attention to the case, but his daughter, who was 24 when she went missing, has not been found. This coming Saturday, her story will be featured on CBS's '48 Hours Mystery,' which airs at 10 p.m. on WKMG-Channel 6. He spoke recently with Sentinel reporter Willoughby Mariano.

Are there any major developments in the case?

No. Unfortunately Jennifer's abduction remains a mystery to authorities, as well as the identity of the suspect. . . . Having said that, most of the authorities working her case as well as our family think that we will find Jennifer. Whether for the good or bad, we believe Jennifer will come home and we are prepared for that day.

Where do you think Jennifer is?

This is a tough one. Within our family there are several thoughts on where we think Jennifer may be. Mine, in particular, revolves around the theory that she was unknowingly stalked, taken at an opportune time and is far away from Orlando and maybe the U.S. . . . Ask me in five minutes, I would probably tell you something else.

Explain your theory.

Nothing of Jennifer's has been found, used, et cetera, which gives me great hope that she may still be alive and waiting to be rescued or escape. I am, however, realistic in the sense that Jennifer may not be with us any longer after such a long period of time missing. Either way, Jennifer needs to be found and brought home.

What was it like to be involved in the '48 Hours' story?

It was an incredible yet stressful experience. From the executive producers to Peter Van Sant, the Emmy-award-winning investigative journalist who did our interviews, all were compassionate, professional and caring in every sense of the word and treated us and Jennifer with great respect.

Did you expect to be able to maintain interest in your daughter's case for so long?

Yes. I will do whatever it takes to keep the awareness of Jennifer's abduction high and find her. It's called unconditional love and a very positive attitude. I am by far not alone in this effort. Jennifer's family, friends and incredible volunteers work tirelessly to keep her name and face in the public's eye all over the world. . . . I have developed skills which I can apply to the effort. I very rarely, if ever, turn down interviews; they are an integral part of finding Jennifer. Do I like what I have to do? No. Our lives are now public, which is not of interest to me at all.

Your daughter's disappearance has taken a huge toll emotionally. What about financially?

Without going into too many particulars, it has cost a lot of money thus far -- a lot. I am, much to contrary belief, not a wealthy person, financially; in fact, far, far from it. People have been extremely generous; however, most if not all of any savings for my future is now depleted. My wealth comes in the form of family, friends and volunteers.

People try to comfort you. What's the worst thing they can say?

"Jennifer has been chosen for a higher purpose, which will come to light someday." To add to that, people often tell us they don't know what to say. [That] you care says it all.

Does it get any easier?

No, no, no, no. And in case you didn't get it -- no. It is an absurd notion to me. How I personally suffer within means nothing. It is all about Jennifer. Period. End of discussion. Think of what Jennifer is or has gone through for over two years in her hell. My feelings or sense of ease don't count at all and shouldn't. I get to eat, shower, sleep, come and go pretty much as I please. I don't think Jennifer has or had that ability.

Anyone with information about the case is asked to call Crimeline at 800-423-TIPS.

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