The Missing Americans Project

Looking for People and Answers

When a U.S. citizen disappears in a foreign country, the family quickly finds that they're on their own. We've been there and want to help.

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Looking for Americans Lost in Foreign Countries

Families of Americans who disappear in foreign countries should not have to invent the wheel. Unfortunately, this is what too often happens: people in deep distress have to learn how to run an international search and rescue operation, raise funds, cultivate relationships with nongovernmental organizations, and work with the media -- all within hours of learning their loved one is missing. The absence of clear standard operating procedures within and among U.S. embassies and a lack of State Department support leads to an unconscionable waste of time when time is of the essence.

The Missing Americans Project is intended to:

* Build awareness of the problems of Americans missing in foreign countries;
* Increase the accountability and transparency of U.S. State Department processes where missing Americans are concerned.
* Lobby for legal and policy changes where necessary.
* Develop a global rapid-response network that is not subject to the same bureaucratic wrangling as the U.S. State Department is.
* Advocate for the interests of the families of missing Americans.

Blog Posts

Mom of Montrealer Missing in Peru for 2 Months Is Not Giving Up

Alisa Clamen is back in Montreal, after spending the last two months abroad, and she's ramping up search and rescue efforts to find her missing son, Jesse Galganov.

She's been on the ground in Peru, working with local officials and search teams there. She also enlisted the help of an Israeli company the specializes in search and rescue.

Galganov, 22, left Montreal late September for an eight-month backpacking trip through South America and Asia.The last time Clamen heard from him was on Sept. 28, just before he embarked on what was supposed to be a four-day trek in the Cordillera Blanca mountains.

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Posted by Jeff Dunsavage on December 1, 2017 at 12:55pm

Bodies of Houston Family Missing Since January Found in Mexico

The bodies of a Houston man, his wife and son who went missing in January during a trip to Mexico are back in Houston.

The family of Juan and Maria Vargas told Eyewitness News that Mexican officials notified them that their bodies were found in September alongside that of 18-year-old Daniel Vargas.

Annel Ochoa, who said her parents and brother went to Mexico for a funeral, said, "From what I was told, it was one suspect's birthday, and when my parents drove by, he said, 'I want that car,' so they stopped them. It was just an ordinary car." 

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Posted by Jeff Dunsavage on December 1, 2017 at 12:13pm

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