Wednesday, February 15, 2006

2/15/06 Lost Without You

Deborah Amburn feels as if she has lost a part of herself, her better half, as she says. Her beloved husband, Thomas has been missing since April 19, 2004, from near their home in Columbus, NC. Numerous searches were done for him, but no trace of him has been found. Some think that Thomas went walking on the mountain behind his home and fell ill or had some other physical mishap, although there is no proof of this. He was 51 at the time. "Sometimes I think he is still on the mountain and we all just missed him somehow in all the undergrowth. I hurt so bad thinking he is still there and just want to look till I find him", Deborah said.

Thomas' case has only received local media attention a few times, Deborah feels it is because he is a missing adult male. She says: "Now it's like fighting a war to get the right help. I have even tried bigger locations, and I try to keep flyers posted for Thomas, but once again missing adult men just don't get what they deserve. They are, after all, just as important as the others, and are loved and missed too. Outreach is difficult in a small community, too."

Losing someone you love in this fashion is never an easy thing, but for Deborah, it has been very difficult. There isn't a big family there to support her and help her through the holidays and the lonely times. She and her daughter talk on the phone often, but she lives too far away for frequent visits. On a day when the weather is bad, or she is not feeling up to it, Deborah will look up to the mountain Thomas loved and say: "How could you take him away from me?" When she feels up to it, she will walk up the mountain and talk to Thomas. It's where she feels closest to him.

Deborah describes Thomas as "a wonderful fun-loving person that always had time for a hug or a kiss for no special reason". Everyone says they were the perfect couple, but a spring day in 2004, this image was shattered. She describes this like a puzzle that is never put together again: "My days are never the same anymore. It's like I just lost the best part of me, and don't know how to get it back. I 'm just lost without him. I have to go on but a part of me is always looking and hoping to find something. It's hard not being able to find anything he had with him that day."

While she doesn't have Thomas with her physcially, Deborah does have special memories she cherishes:

"Thomas is a wonderful person, always cheerful and smiling, and always there to help someone. I never knew a single person who didn't like him. He loved to work on old cars. I remember one time a friend gave him an old yellow wreck of a truck out of his junk yard. Thomas took it apart and completely redid all of the body work and the engine. He painted it candy apple red, and was so proud of it. One time I drove it to visit my friend, and on the way back I stopped at a rest area. A man wanted to buy the truck, and he followed me home to talk to Thomas about it. I had already told him it wasn't for sale, but he insisted on talking to Thomas. Thomas didn't sell the truck, as it was his baby.

We loved to go to Tenneesee on vacation, and particulary to Cades Cove. We both loved the outdoors. At the cove, you could see deer and bear wandering around. There was a time Thomas was going to take a picture of a bear. He was very close to the bear and it was as if the bear stopped and posed for him! He was so excited that he talked about it forever. He had a wonderful way with animals."

Deborah has learned much in the close to two years since Thomas disappeared.

"Always treasure each day because you never know if you will have a tomorrow. Make sure to let them know you love them because you may never get another chance."

She feels strongly that her faith and prayer have brought her through the dark days. "I'll always believe there is hope," Deborah says.

When she thinks of Thomas, she tells him: "Please come home. There is a empty spot here and it just needs you to fill it. I love you and miss you so much, and I would to anything to bring you home where you belong."

Deborah is planning a prayer vigil for the 2 year anniversary date of Thomas' disappearance.

For more information about Thomas, please see


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