Search for missing pregnant woman enters second week
ULUPALAKUA – A weary-eyed Brooke Scott reclined her seat in her car and fell fast asleep Monday afternoon behind the Ulupalakua Ranch Store.
The 29-year-old from Haiku had spent all morning searching for her younger sister Carly “Charli” Scott and had finally reached her limit.
“I fall asleep at, like, three in the morning and I’m trying not to do that but there’s just not enough hours in the day to do what we want,” Brooke Scott said. “We exert ourselves and throw ourselves down gulches all day and get home and try to update things without getting sidetracked by some of the Facebook stuff and media stuff. I’m trying to stay away from that because right now it’s a distraction from what I’m trying to do.”
Carly Scott, 27 and five months pregnant, has been missing for more than a week. She was last seen around 8 p.m. Feb. 9 at her older sister’s home in Haiku. Family members said that Scott left the house to help her ex-boyfriend, whose car broke down around Mile Marker 20 on Hana Highway in Keanae.
“Today, because my body is kind of giving up on me a little bit, I’m going to try to use my brain a little more and look for things” to hand over to police to help with the investigation, Brooke Scott said.
Maui Police Department spokesman Lt. William Juan reported no new information Monday on the search for Scott.
Since her disappearance, 50 to 70 family members and volunteers have conducted daily searches from Haiku to Hana. On Monday, volunteers met outside the Upcountry ranch store and conducted searches along Kula and Piilani highways.
“We’ve been here since 7 a.m.,” family friend Jeff Simon said Monday afternoon.
Simon and a team of volunteers set up headquarters in a covered structure with about a dozen maps of remote areas such as Kailua, Waianapanapa, Nahiku and Ulumalu – all donated by Maui County’s Geographic Information Systems program. By 3 p.m., the team had maps of nearly the entire island.
Josh Berlien, another friend, fielded text messages, phone calls and personal reports from search teams, and jotted down notes on the maps.
“I really need to get some sleep,” he said.
Among those searching on foot were Jacob Evans and Mike Nakamura from Maui Dog Tags, a nonprofit group devoted to helping military veterans with working and service dogs. Working dogs are those found in K-9 units and service dogs help disabled veterans.
Evans and Nakamura, who served in the Air Force and Army, respectively, searched through areas of heavy foliage in Ulupalakua using binoculars and their senses.
“We’re looking for anything that seems out of the ordinary or doesn’t look right,” Evans said while walking between Mile Markers 18 and 19 along Kula Highway. “And for smell unfortunately.”
In addition to the searches by foot, motorcycles, all-terrain vehicles, helicopters and working dogs have participated over the past week. On Sunday, the team had a drone donated by Maui-based Blue Sky Aerial Solutions take pictures and video of unreachable cliff faces and ravines on the north shores of Haiku and Hana.
More than a dozen of Scott’s relatives have flown in from the Mainland, including her father, Robert Scott.
He flew in from Seattle on Wednesday night, delayed because he was in complete “denial” that his daughter had gone missing.
“I was hoping it was an overreaction to something,” he said. “Unfortunately I felt pretty bad that I could’ve got here a day sooner had I not been suffering from that denial.”
Carly Scott was born Nov. 24, 1986, in Woodland, Calif. She moved to Sacramento around age 6, after her parents divorced, and eventually came to Maui around age 17.
Scott received the equivalent of a high school diploma on Maui and lived with her five sisters and another half-dozen relatives on a large property in Haiku.
A few months ago, however, she became pregnant and found her own residence in Makawao.
“Charli likes to have her own space and she was always a really, really hard worker,” Brooke Scott said. “She has her two dogs but she was living alone in her tiny little place in Makawao and every day we tried to spend time with her because none of us really loved the idea of her being alone like that.
“We could’ve spent more time with her.”
The older sister, who is about three months pregnant, recalled talking with Scott about the sex of their babies and potential names.
“We were gonna let our children grow up together and play together,” she said, holding back tears. “They were only going to be a few months apart.”
At 16 years old, Phaedra Wais is the youngest of Carly Scott’s sisters; however, she was one of the closest.
“We usually talked every day,” said Wais, a junior at King Kekaulike High School. “She used to pick me up from school and drop me off at work.”
Wais said that when her sister learned she was pregnant, she did not tell family members until about a month later.
“For the first couple weeks when she was starting to feel sick she really thought she was sick,” she said. “When she found out she was pregnant, she needed to talk to someone to figure out what to do.”
Robert Scott said that his daughter had always been a “hard worker” and did not ask much from anybody.
“She’d give almost everything away. I’d use to have to get on her and say, ‘Hey, you better build some of your own financial security, don’t give it all away,'” he said jokingly. “But that’s what she wanted to do. That’s Charli.”
While Robert Scott arrived a few days after daughter’s disappearance, he credited her stepfather, Johnny Pipkin, for spearheading efforts.
“I’m so thankful to everybody, especially John Pipkin, he’s been phenomenal,” he said. “I don’t know what I would’ve done without him because it would’ve been extremely difficult for me to do something being from outside the area and not having the circle of friends.”
Pipkin, who works for ELCCO Inc., has had several of his coworkers – including Simon and Berlien – help with the search.
Kimberlyn Scott, Carly Scott’s mother, said that the family is “taking a breather” today and will not be actively searching. However, an independent group will meet at 7 a.m. at the Haiku Community Center, and the family is asking anyone with personal watercraft, kayaks and other water equipment to join.
“This break is mainly to regroup because everyone has been literally falling asleep around 2 a.m.,” Kimberlyn Scott said. “We just have to stop. And Brooke is pregnant and I know she won’t stop unless the entire family stops. I would like at least one grandchild to survive this.
“But I want everyone to know that we’re just pausing the search to collect ourselves. We are not stopping.”
Anyone interested in joining today’s search should call Alton Franco at 264-3995.
* Chris Sugidono can be reached at email@example.com.