The family of a missing Dayton man, Steven Dean, will hold a Day of Remembrance on Saturday to mark the one-year anniversary of the day he disappeared. Dean’s mom, Jessie Hebert, says she also hopes to bring attention to his case and those of other missing persons.
The Day of Remembrance will take place at 4 p.m. in the empty lot where her son was last seen walking. The address is 704 US 90 W in Dayton. A balloon release will be part of the ceremony.
Dean, 34, went missing on Aug. 15 from his rented cabin on US 90 across from Raceway gas station in Dayton. Most of his belongings were found inside his home and his car was still parked outside. His cell phone was found six days later behind the Raceway gas station. He was employed as an oilfield inspector and served in the U.S. Army until he was honorably discharged years ago.
His mom says the last year has been hell for the family. Birthdays and holidays have come and gone without him.
“Life is going on but nothing is the same. We are just going through the motions day by day. His Christmas presents are still sitting on the shelf of my house. They will stay there until we find him,” she said. “I still cry every single day. I see things that he liked or things he would have gotten a kick out of, and I am reminded. It’s a nightmare and I just want to wake up from it.”
Hebert said Saturday’s Day of Remembrance is not a memorial service. She simply wants his disappearance to be remembered.
“I want awareness that my son is still out there somewhere. Hopefully someone will pass by and see us out there, and God will put something on their heart to come forward, even if they do it anonymously. I don’t care if they do it anonymously. I can’t let this day come and go without doing something to honor our son,” she said.
Worse than being the parent of a deceased child is being the parent of a missing child. With no answers for his disappearance, she lingers in both hope and despair.
“I know my son is out there somewhere, probably dead, but I can’t say goodbye. I have to be his voice because he cannot be. We have to make people aware that not only is he missing but there are many other people still missing as well,” Hebert said.
Dean is described as 5′ 10″ tall, weighing 160 pounds with a slender build. He has blonde hair and blue eyes. He has a tattoo on his forearm with the word “Soldier” and a small skull and cross on his upper right chest.
Anyone with information about this case is asked to contact Dayton Police Department at 936-258-7621. The public is invited to attend the remembrance ceremony on Saturday.