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Mother of long-missing son seeks closure

On the morning of Friday, Jan. 25, 2002, Christopher Carlton Thompkins kissed his mother good-bye and drove off to work. That was the last time she saw him. Christopher has not been seen or heard from since.

"I truly believe in my heart that my son is no longer alive, however I need closure,” Ann McKenzie said on the sixth anniversary of her son's disappearance. “I need to know what happened that day and where my son's body is.”

Christopher, then 20, went missing while working with a four-man survey crew in Harris County. He was last seen in a wooded area between Warm Springs Road and Georgia 85 near County Line Road, the Ledger-Enquirer reported.

McKenzie recounts the day her son disappeared:

“Christopher left home about 8:10 a.m. He parked his car at work and drove to the job site with the surveyor he worked for. (At the time I was also employed by the surveyor's family as their baby-sitter.) He worked that morning with three other employees in a lightly wooded area off County Line Road. All the workers were about 50 feet from each other, walking in the same direction. Sometime after lunch, around 1 p.m. the surveyor phoned his wife to inform her that Christopher was missing. One of Christopher's co-workers stated that ‘Chris was walking in the same direction as the others when he looked away and then looked back, Christ was gone.’ I was not informed of his disappearance until 4:15 p.m.”

According to the law, the family had to wait 24 hours before filing a formal missing person's report with the Harris County Sheriff's Department, but McKenzie said they didn't just wait. They launched their own search.

Hour after hour, without assistance from law enforcement, they combed the area where Christopher was supposedly last seen, McKenzie said.

“What we found was puzzling and did not make sense in light of what Christopher's co-workers told authorities,” the mother said. “We found one of his boots, his work tools, a blue fiber from his pants and 12 cents on the ground near the items. the statements by his employer and co-workers indicated that they believed Christopher just walked off the job site without telling anyone. His other boot was found several months later, miles from the original boot, on some property off I-85. It was found by the owner of the property.”

McKenzie does not believe Christopher would simply walk away from a job site in January wearing one or no boots.

His employer said in the days preceding his disappearance, Christopher had been “acting strangely,” but gave no specifics, McKenzie said.

“Chris lived with me and I saw him every day. There was neither strange behavior on his part nor any distress,” she said.

But his mother is greatly distressed.

“I am not a citizen with great influence,” McKenzie said. “I am simply a grieving mother who wants to keep this case in the public light in hopes that one day someone will come forward with some information in what happened to my son.”

Name: Christopher Carlton Thompkins Went Missing: 01/25/02From: Ellerslie, Ga.Sex/Race: Male/BlackDOB: 12/28/81Eyes: BlackHair: Black, braidedHeight: 5 feet, 7 inchesWeight: 124 poundsIdentifying Marks: Tattoo of ice cream cone with the name “Chris” on his right arm.Jewelry: Black watchLast seen wearing: Black shirt, blue and gray plaid jacket with gray hood, navy Dickies work pants, tan Fubu boots.

If you have information regarding this case please contact: Harris County Sheriff, 706-628-4211

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