Updated Tue, Mar 18, 2014 2:02 pm
The parents of a missing 21-year-old are holding on to hope and faith four days after their son went missing.
Sam Wiater was reported missing Thursday night and his parents hope the Athens community can help them find answers to what happened to their son.
"There are so many people standing and believing with us and I don't know how to get through this if it weren't for all this support and love and encouragement that we have received," Trina Wiater said. "It's been overwhelming and that's been such a blessing to us."
His parents, who live in Pickerington, describe Sam as a caring, hardworking and independent person. Sam and two other friends moved to Athens last April. Sam’s mom Trina said her son is intelligent, scoring a 33 on the ACT and aspired to be a musician.
Trina said Sam was very emotional when he called her Thursday night, just two days after they met for dinner to celebrate his 21st birthday. She and her other son immediately drove from Pickerington to Athens.
“He was frantic,” Trina said. “We don't really know why. I don't understand that part of the puzzle yet of why he was upset.”
Trina said Sam's girlfriend said he left the apartment and went down by the river.
Trina said she found Sam’s car parked in the middle of Currier Street, near the bike path, with the keys still inside them. Authorities have said they do not suspect foul play.
Authorities used helicopters to search the area overnight and then spent most of the day Friday searching the Hocking River.
Sam's parents hopeful their son will be found safe and sound.
His father said no matter the circumstances that may have caused his son’s disappearance he just wants him to come home.
“Our arms and our home are absolutely wide open to him,” Jeff Wiater said. “There would be complete forgiveness, acceptance, and love and support wholeheartedly. We love him with all of our heart. There is nothing he could do to change that.”
Sam Wiater is 6-feet-1 inch tall with a slim build. He weighs 175 pounds. He has long, reddish-brown hair that goes past his shoulders and hazel/green eyes. He was last seen wearing blue jeans, black tennis shoes and a blue Baja hoodie.
Anyone with information can call the Athens Police Department at (740) 593-6606.