Family seeks closure as search continues

The family of a woman missing since June is facing the Christmas season with heavy hearts as the search for her continues.

Sara Ashley Hill, now 34, has been missing since late spring, and there are no new leads in the case, Patrick County Sheriff Dan Smith said.

“We have followed every lead, but we have not located” Hill, Smith said.

Hill’s last known address was in Patrick County, according to Hill’s sister, April Cain.

But Cain said the last time the two spoke, Hill told her she was on Blue Hollow Road, which is in Surry County, North Carolina.

That was around 1:30 a.m. on June 4, when Hill called Cain to say that she needed a ride. Hill didn’t say why she was at that location or provide any other specifics, Cain said.

“She said only that she needed a ride and that her phone was about to die,” Cain said, and explained that she works third shift as a nurse. That night, she was assigned to work in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU), she said.

“I was at work, about an hour away, and I couldn’t leave to go get her,” Cain said, adding that she thought her sister found another way home or drove her own vehicle.

“The next day, I messaged her, called her, left voicemails,” but got no response, Cain said. “She hasn’t even read them,” Cain said of the social media messages she sent to Hill.

A week to 10 days after their last conversation, Cain said that when calling Hill, she reached a recording that the person could not be reached. She said she suspected the service had either been cut off or the phone was dead.

As she and other family members that included Hill’s mother, Thelma Pack, started asking questions, they heard that Hill “had been hanging out on” Blue Hollow Road, Cain said.

The family relayed those findings to Patrick County Sheriff’s investigators, who followed up on the information, Cain said.

“We are so thankful for the time and efforts of the Patrick County Sheriff’s Office,” Cain said.

Hill also supposedly frequented a location on Asbury Road, Cain said, adding she also heard that Hill had been “picked up by three guys that night.”

Authorities again followed up on the new information, Cain said, adding she also found the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) for Hill’s car, and passed that on to authorities who ran the information and concluded the vehicle is a white 2000 Ford Taurus.

Hill’s vehicle still has not been found, but Cain said a family member saw photos of what was thought to be Hill’s vehicle in a store located just off NC Highway 89.

The vehicle was believed to be associated with some incidents at the store, but the owner did not recognize Hill as among those involved in the alleged incidents, Cain said.

Family members also mined Hill’s social media pages “to see who last contacted her,” and followed up with those individuals, but there was no new information, Cain said.

The family then created posters. “We posted them everywhere; we sent posters to states throughout the country,” Cain said. To date, those efforts also have yielded no information.

Cain said the family has heard rumors that Hill went to California or West Virginia. They also have followed up on that information, but to no avail.

Pack said Hill was “involved with a lot of different people and a lot of different lifestyles. Partly because of that, she said that some social media comments about her daughter have been hurtful to a family already in agony.

“It’s cruel for people to be so negative,” she said. “My own personal thoughts are” that Hill is in a situation and doesn’t realize her family is searching for her. “My only consolation is that God has been where she is and that He will protect her until she” reaches that realization.

She also said she hopes others will “be more aware of their surroundings when they are out. People need to be more watchful of their children than ever before. There are so many predators out there.”

Pack said she has dreamed many times that her daughter is home safely. She referred to a scripture that states “He will hide you in the clefts of a rock. I have to believe He’s hiding her.”

“We want closure. We want to find her. Whatever it takes,” Cain said.

Anyone with any information about Hill’s whereabouts is encouraged to contact Smith at (276) 692-7012 or their local authorities.

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