Parents desperate for daughter’s return

Kerri Breen
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Twenty-year-old disappeared without a trace on Monday

Gilbert Goodyear says he’s not leaving St. John’s until he finds his daughter or the RNC tells him she’s been spotted.

Gilbert and Viola Goodyear sit at the kitchen table in their daughter’s tiny but comfortable St. John’s apartment as they talk to The Telegram about the disappearance of their 20-year-old daughter, Samantha. The young MUN education student last spoke

Samantha Goodyear, 20, a bright Memorial University student with aspirations of becoming a teacher, disappeared from her apartment on Summer Street in St. John’s Monday.

Goodyear is about 5' 3" and 125 pounds, with black shoulder-length hair with blonde roots, and hazel eyes.

Her parents, Gilbert and Viola of Carmanville, have been staying at her apartment with her beloved dog, Jake, since Monday night.

Jake had been staying with her parents.

They have been scouring the city, putting up posters, talking to neighbours, friends and police.

“I want everyone out there to keep their eyes peeled,” Gilbert said.

“No matter how small a detail they might think it is, how stupid they might think it is.”

During their last few conversations with their daughter on Sunday, nothing seemed out of the ordinary, they said.

With Samantha in St. John’s, and the rest of family at home in Carmanville, she chatted over the phone with both parents that evening while they all watched “Mr. Bean” on TV.

The next afternoon, the Goodyears had missed three calls from Samantha’s home phone number — at 4:16, 4:18 and 4:20 p.m.

“So I assume she was just pushing redial,” Viola said. “But she didn’t call my cell.”

By 7:30 p.m., they couldn’t reach her — and the thought that something was wrong crossed Viola’s mind temporarily.

Samantha would call to check in every day, often multiple times, so it was unusual that they couldn’t reach her.

“Because she lived alone, we kind of liked to keep some idea of where she (was),” Viola said.

After a friend in St. John’s checked on Samantha’s apartment and didn’t find her there, the Goodyears hopped in the car just after 10 p.m. without much more than the clothes on their backs.

The walls of her small, neat apartment are now mostly bare. The Goodyears have taken down the pictures and certificates looking for a note, a phone number — anything that could lead them to their daughter’s whereabouts.

“They’re saying, they got nowhere to start searching. They’re basically walking in the dark and I’m f--king heart-broken, pardon the language.” Gilbert Goodyear

Samantha’s iPod, laptop and cellphone charger were left in her home. A painting she started about a month ago was found partially finished.

Gilbert and Viola said their daughter did not appear depressed or in danger of harming herself.

The proud, protective parents said their daughter graduated from high school as valedictorian — they wanted her to pursue college in Gander so she’d be close to home, but she had her heart set on MUN so they supported it.

Samantha plays keyboard and adores classical music, they said — the ringtone on her cordless phone at her apartment is Beethoven’s “Für Elise.”

At the time of The Telegram’s interview, that phone didn’t stop ringing.

The Goodyears haven’t heard much news, however.

Const. Greg Hobbs, the RNC’s missing person co-ordinator, said he’s worked on almost 200 missing persons files this year, and nearly all of those people have been found.

“There is always that 0.1 per cent,” he added.

Police are following up on tips so they can begin to focus their search.

“They’re saying, they got nowhere to start searching,” Gilbert said. “They’re basically walking in the dark and I’m f--king heart-broken, pardon the language.”

The last number called on Samantha’s cellphone was that of her 17-year-old brother in Carmanville, but it’s not known if that was before or after she called her parents Sunday evening, or if she even reached him.

Her phone, which is missing from the apartment, has now either been turned off or has run out of battery power.

Anyone with information can call the RNC at 729-8000.

Organizations: RNC

Geographic location: Carmanville, Gander, MUN

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Recent comments

  • DontTellMyNameToStrangers
    August 21, 2010 - 19:26

    As a young woman this has me and my family very cautious. My mother doesn't even want me to so much as go to the mall by myself now. The crowded mall. I can't say i blame her. So lets also talk about the fact that major traffic areas are all close to this victims area of living. MUN, downtown, malls, bannerman, and the sketchiest of all, quidi vidi. The cops could arrest someone from quidi vidi every night if they actually paid attention to the fact that there's constant drug deals going on there after dark with some of the sketchiest men NL has to offer. If i wasn't an unarmed young lady myself, i'd be knocking on every door looking for this girl. The police have no excuse for not jumping on this harder. Speeders on kenmount road are obvioussssly waaaaaaay more important. (sarcasm) They might not have much to go on but they should be asking the family a zillion and one questions until they can think of every possibility. They should be telling us MORE so we CAN help. Like we all want to know.. Did she go for walks? Where? Did she drive ever? Where did she hang out in spare time? Shop a lot? Take any medication (trips to drugstores)? Dating? Have they checked her computer? Ever go downtown? Wasn't planning on getting groceries? Where did she generally get those to? Did she walk to colmans on merrymeeting very close to her? or caines grocery? or stockwoods? If she regularly shopped somewhere small like that the workers may have saw something odd. Did her friends notice anything different? Did they spend much time with her? Did she have good locks on her doors? Did she do something routinely every day/night so that someone could catch on to it? How did she get to school every day? Walk? Bus? Ride? Drive? Lemme tell you... a happy/non depressed girl who leaves her ipod at home and her cell phone charger... was NOT planning on leaving or leaving for long. So we can trust that she never ran away. They say she didn't seem depressed or in danger of harming herself.. and a person that was planning to do something to harm themselves probably wouldn't have their cell phone with them. They'd probably have the mentally of "what's the point?" So it's safe to say something horrible has happened here... and we should all be concerned and on the look out. I will do my part. I wish i could speak to the family for more information so i could know more on how to protect MYSELF as well. I dunno... i'm locking my windows at night that's for sure.

    • Courtney
      August 22, 2010 - 20:37

      Shes home!

  • Eugene from Town
    August 21, 2010 - 09:55

    Our family doesn't live far from Summer Street, this has us all unnerved. Have the RNC used tracking dogs from the apartment attempting to follow her scent? If she didn't drive she most likely left her home on foot. I'm upset that missing person cases aren't taken seriously enough by the police until it seems they are truly lost. My heart, too is effing breaking for you, Mr. Goodyear, it happens easily when you're a dad.

  • Worried
    August 20, 2010 - 14:31

    Just a long shot, but does anyone know if she has her wallet on her? Or a new bank card/credit card with the chip in it? Or if she would have it on her, I guess, not if she does for sure. BUT you can track that card if it has a chip in it. It might help. My prayers are with the family in their time of need.

    • John
      August 20, 2010 - 19:44

      Other interviews I have heard say that she had her wallet with her, and that it has not been used.

  • Catherine
    August 20, 2010 - 13:31

    If this family needs help putting posters up, please contact the Telegram or CBC news. I've left my contact information with them.

  • catherine altini
    August 20, 2010 - 12:10

    Keegan's Court is not far from Summer St,where the girl is missing. The telegram had an article not long ago,where the people of Keegan's Court were worried about a sex offender living there. Did the RCMP check on hin? Just asking

    • Sheldon
      August 20, 2010 - 14:14

      Yes, the technology does exist to triangulate from cell towers, the last active signal from Samantha's cell phone. The technology does exist elsewhere like in Ontario where I have seen it used and have located missing/suicidal people, one as recent as last week, however, I can't say for sure if it works in Newfoundland. I have seen the triangulation sometimes be as specific as 200 metres of a known cross road but can also be as vague as a 10 km radius. If this technology does exist there, and if it has been utilized, which I am sure it has, it would only provide the last point of use or the last time the phone had power. I have been reading blogs and comments for the last hour. Many concerned people have voiced their frustration over the limited information that has been released so far. To be fair to the local police, we have to presume they are doing all they can and also consider that they may have other insight and strategies that would not make it advantageous to release anymore information than they have so far. That being said, I too would like to see more use of the public's help in this case. The assistance of the public is always beneficial but nowhere is this more true than in a close-knit community like Newfoundland where almost everyone wants to help.

  • Wondering
    August 20, 2010 - 12:08

    Just wondering if the cell phone company can trace (through the towers) where her phone was when her parents were calling and not getting an answer before the battery went dead or the phone was turned off. I've heard of them being able to trace from the last outgoing call made but not sure about incoming calls. Just a thought....

  • Marie
    August 20, 2010 - 10:02

    My heart and prayers go out to the Goodyear family, that you find her. I think with all our modern technology, that all cell phones should have automatic location detection, and incorporate that cost into sale of the phone. Too many people go missing, and this is just one step to help people find those that are missing.

  • Janet
    August 20, 2010 - 09:56

    I thought your original quote was far more impactful. Whoever's idea it was to censor that well-placed f-word made a mistake, in my opinion.

  • rainman
    August 20, 2010 - 09:37

    "The last number called on Samantha’s cellphone was that of her 17-year-old brother in Carmanville, but it’s not known if that was before or after she called her parents Sunday evening, or if she even reached him." How could they not know if she reached her brother or not? Have they not spoken to the brother?????

    • glenn pennell
      August 20, 2010 - 17:27

      they contacted her brother she didnt reach her brother

  • Concerned
    August 20, 2010 - 09:21

    I can't help but compare this missing persons case to the young lady that went missing almost a month ago from the Goulds, both young women, both with dark hair, both with no known reason to leave...... Why haven't the RNC adressed this issue? The public I am sure, would like to know if there may be some connection in these two cases. I pray for Ms. goodyear's safe return.

  • diane
    August 20, 2010 - 07:48

    Why hasn't anyone mentioned what part of St. John's this poor girl's apartment is in? That would help, wouldn't it? Especially if they're hoping that neighbours or passers-by might have seen something...

    • Jon
      August 20, 2010 - 13:32

      Why don't people actually read articles carefully before posting. If you read the very first paragraph of the story it says she lives on Summer Street. This street is just a short walking distance, southwest of MUN campus.