HOLLADAY (ABC4 Utah News) – Family and friends of missing American Fork man Paul Swenson gathered Wednesday night for a candlelight vigil to “wish him home”.
The 30 year old husband and father has not been seen since Friday, July 28th when American Fork Police say he was spotted in Salt Lake City acting erratically.
Paul’s father in law, John Martindale, told ABC4 Utah News that Paul’s disappearance has turned their lives “upside down”.
“We’re worried about Paul,” Martindale said. “We’re worried about what’s going to transpire the next day. Emotions have been extremely heightened. We’ve had some breakdowns with my daughter, my wife, myself so it’s been really difficult.”
Martindale says he shared a special moment with Paul while on vacation a few weeks ago.
“I took an opportunity to give him a hug, a man hug, right?” Martindale said. “Sometimes a man hug is just a brief thing and you let go. I took the opportunity of not letting go and I held him tight and I whispered in his ear and I said ‘I love you’ and I want him to know we love him dearly. From the perspective of a father in law, a husband for my daughter, a father of my granddaughter, we need Paul back.”
Paul’s older brother Sam Swenson said the family has hope that he will return home safely.
“We have reason to believe that he is alive,” Sam told ABC4 Utah News. “Currently we’re beginning to feel that maybe his mental state, he’s had some type of mental breakdown or mental stress or strain that may have kind of caused him to disappear and so at this point we are exploring all tips. We’re still very very interested in any and all tips or leads that come in if you see him or have seen him we’d love to know and pass that on to local authorities.”
Sam said that the family is no longer calling for volunteers because they feel all areas where Paul could be have been adequately searched.