Mother of missing ASU student to hire private investigator as search continues

Posted: Updated:
By Andrew Michalscheck By Andrew Michalscheck

TEMPE, Ariz. -- More than a week after 19-year-old Jack Culolias disappeared, his mother Grace Culolias packed up his dorm room at ASU this weekend.

“It is something a parent should never have to do,” she said. “I picked up all of his clothes and his TV.  We put it in a van, and we’re going home.”

However, Grace Culolias, who lives in California, said she will do everything she can to keep the investigation moving forward.  She told 3TV she’s seeking an attorney and plans on hiring a private investigator, as Tempe Police continue to work the case.

“Please, I beg of you; please continue to help me find my son,” she pleaded. “It is very surprising that a 19-year-old boy could go to a frat party at Cadillac Ranch and vanish without anyone coming forward and saying what happened."

Jack Culolias, a freshman at ASU, was last seen the night of Friday, Nov. 30th.  Police said he was escorted out of Cadillac Ranch at Tempe Marketplace, while at a Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity event.

However, frat brothers and friends of Jack say they did not see him leave.

“There has been no sign of foul play, so as I said, how is it possible that a 19-year-old boy, 6 feet tall can just vanish?” asked Grace Culolias. “It’s so hard to understand, even comprehend.”

Over the weekend, Jack’s friends returned to the area where teams of detectives searched since Tuesday, following the discovery of Jack’s shoe by Salt River.

As of Friday night, police called off the search in the area, for the time being, but a volunteer who said she has 17 years of search and rescue experience, returned to the scene Saturday and Sunday.

“You gotta keep your eyes open; you gotta keep looking,” said Dayna Miller. 

Miller, along with her search dog, and a team of Jack’s friends, combed for clues along the water’s edge.

“Somebody may have missed something,” Miller said. “I mean there’s so much terrain out here, and so much brush. This is pretty rough down here.”

Friends of Jack Culolias said they will do everything they can to keep their efforts going strong in Arizona, as Jack’s family does the same from Orange County.

“You can’t just walk away,” said Grace Culolias. “How do you walk away? How does a mom walk away?”

If you have any information that can help investigators, contact Tempe Police.