ST. GEORGE, Utah, Dec. 14, 2016 (Gephardt Daily) — A seasonal push for more followers on the Facebook page set up to help find missing St. George teen Macin Smith has already resulted in new leads.
Keith Bratt, the brother of Macin’s mom, Tracey Bratt-Smith, announced on Dec. 7 that his aim before Christmas was to reach 20,000 followers on the Help Find Macin Smith Facebook page. That number has been hovering right around 15,000 for most of this year.
Keith Bratt wrote, in part: “I started this Facebook page when my nephew Macin went missing, and I approve those that ask to join, and I approve the posts.
“Obviously with Christmas right around the corner, the greatest gift I could ask for is for answers for my sister, and her family. The numbers of likes on this page have gone up and down over the last fourteen months, but I have a huge favor to ask. For Christmas I would like to give Tracey 20,000 likes, not because a number matters, but I want her to know how many people love and support her, carry her on her hard journey, and are by her side.”
Macin, the last of the Smith’s six children living at home, walked away from home in the early morning hours of Sept. 1, 2015, when his parents thought the then 17-year-old was on his way to school. On Jan. 1, 2017, Macin will have been missing 16 months.
Wednesday morning, Keith Bratt posted: “We are only 1,700 away from the goal of 20,000. I got a message from Tracey this morning that the detectives have received three photos, for her to look at, and new leads are coming in. So many times I hear ‘I wish I could do More.’ I truly love and appreciate everyone who has shared, joined, and posted anything to do with Macin.
“Someone, somewhere knows something, it’s that one share, that one friend you added that could save a life, find a body, or whatever it is that brings closer for our family. We are prepared for any answer whatever it is. We want Macin home safe and sound, and that has always been our prayer. Please continue to share. We have eleven days left to reach 20,000 strong. We can do it. I truly hug and thank everyone of you personally. You have all done so much.”
By Wednesday at 9:30 p.m., that number swelled to 20,092 members, surpassing their goal.
Keith Bratt, speaking exclusively to Gephardt Daily, said: “I felt as time went by, more people were leaving the group than joining. With it being so close to Christmas, I knew it would be especially hard, not having Macin around, and still not having any answers.
“I knew it was a huge request to push for 20,000 but that was my goal. I had good friends, and family say, that is too aggressive as a goal. I know I say it all the time, but Macin’s Army is incredible, and have supported and helped Tracey and our family beyond words.”
Macin left behind his cellphone, wallet, laptop, even his school binder, and vanished without a trace.
Since that day, Macin’s family and friends have had no solid evidence that Macin is still alive. The family has worked with professional search organization Red Rock Search and Rescue and police to bring him home. A search last month of a particular rugged area in St. George yielded the same results as all the other searches: nothing.
There is even a $10,000 reward in place, offered for information leading to his safe return. In January, Macin’s story will be featured on the Investigation Discovery Channel documentary series “Disappeared.”
Bratt-Smith and other family members have posted Facebook updates almost every day to the Help Find Macin Smith page — whose members are known collectively as Macin’s Army — in the hope of bringing him home.
Macin did leave a note, which his parents discovered a week later folded inside his wallet. They have not released the contents, preferring to say the note contained an “intent,” which led them to believe he may have planned to harm himself.
Anyone with information about Macin is asked to call the St. George Police Department at 435-627-4300, or David Cummings at RRSAR at 702-787-4068.
To watch Bill Gephardt’s August interview with Tracey Bratt-Smith and Darrin Smith, click below.