ST. GEORGE, Utah (ABC4 News) – The mother of a St. George teen who has now been missing five years shares a message of love, hope, and healing in remembrance of her son Macin.
It has been a story without an ending, a journey full of ups, downs, hope, and raw heartbreak but it is also a story about love, commitment, support, and healing for the Smith family and their son Macin.
Macin Smith, 17, left home on the morning of September 1, 2015.
His mother, Tracey K. Smith and his father Darrin Smith thought he was on his way to school but later found out he never even made it. Macin left his cell phone, wallet, and computer at home, taking nothing with him.
Tracey and Darrin found a note a week later inside his wallet, a note they say indicated had to lead them to believe he might have intended to harm himself.
The last five years have been filled with dozens of searches, both by professionals and thousands of volunteers, none which have led anyone to answers as to what may have happened to the blue-eyed blond-haired boy.
Tracey shared her message on a Facebook page filled with “Macin’s Army” members which has become an avenue for many to visit and share their thoughts about the missing teen.
“One of the things on this five-year mark will enable us to do is declare him deceased which will legally open up some doors and there are also some spiritual things that can happen with that declaration as well,” said Tracy. “I am just expressing gratitude and anybody who has a missing family member, not just a child, but anyone missing a family member to just know it gets a little better to cope as time passes and to not give up hope.
Tracey says there is a new normal that comes with that knowledge.
“It’s obviously turned our lives upside down, it’s been challenging, but there is good that has come from this. To be able to filter through all the muck and mire and see there is still so much good, there is good people, there are good circumstances and there is joy to still be had.”
The Facebook page has also turned into a hope page for concerned friends and family of other missing people who come to share information about their loved ones.
Jolyne Gailey, a long time volunteer, page administrator, and family friend to Macin’s family said the pain is still just as heartbreaking now as it was five years ago.
“This still hurts, just as much as the first second, minute, hour, day, week and year…. Your heartache, your disappearance, possibly your death!?,” said Gailey. “It will not be in vain, It will not go unnoticed, we will continue to search, we will continue to help others the best we can. This is for YOU Macin. We love you.”
Macin’s uncle, Kieth Bratt, also took to the page to express his feelings about what he believes happened to Macin in hopes it will encourage others to reach out and know they are not alone.
“Macin’s Army was started five years ago to keep my family up to date on searches, and information on Macin. Today we are 51,000 family members,” said Bratt. “I have always believed Macin commuted suicide, as he felt he was picked on, and did not fit in. I hope one day he will see how loved he is. If you feel alone, and no one cares, I DO.”
The last large scale search for Macin was in September 2018 where during scorching hot weather in the dry desert, 100+ men, women, and teens showed up to offer their love and support for Macin and his family.
There have been many reported sightings of Macin over the last five years, all over the country, but none have turned out to be him.
In 2019, the community stepped in to give his mother a place to reflect, grieve and feel a little closer to her son.
“I’m hoping that those who feel alone will now have something to connect with and that they aren’t alone in their struggles,” said Tracey K. Smith.
Gailey said they will still continue to have searches on a smaller scale and that no one will forget Macin or stop trying to find out what happened to him.
Macin is 6 feet 4 inches tall and weighs 200 pounds. He has light blue eyes and he had short blond hair when he went missing.
You can follow Macin’s story, and that of many other missing individuals at Help Find Macin Smith #MacinsArmy