People using social media to help find Taylor Anderson

By Melissa Correa - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) – They may not be able to physically go to Japan to find a missing 24-year-old Chesterfield woman, but people in Richmond are using every opportunity to spread the word.

In fact, one woman is using social media to search for clues about Taylor Anderson who was last seen after the earthquake but before the tsunami.

Online posts concerning Taylor Anderson are on Twitter and Facebook.  People from all over the world are reaching out to folks right here in Richmond with contact information for Japan and government agencies who may be able to help search for Taylor who went missing about 50 miles north of Sendai, ground zero of the quake.

From her hi-rise office in downtown Richmond Kira Siddall sent an international message for help.

"It's kind of like a modern day telephone tree," explained Siddall.  "So you're immediately connecting to someone that you know, and if that person has an international following, then they're reaching out."

Siddall wears her St. Catherine's School class ring.  24-year-old Taylor Anderson graduated from there too. And although the girls have never met, Kira wants to help find Taylor.

"I got some emails from some JET teachers, which is the program she's in," said Siddall.

Taylor is a part of J.E.T. a Japanese exchange program. She had just finished teaching American culture to children when the quake hit.  The last time she was seen was about 15 minutes before the tsunami, when she was biking home.  Right before our interview Friday afternoon, Kira received a promising email.

"From somebody that's 50 kilometers away. He said that he was going to try to go or he would definitely send more people to go. All I know is what they say. So I don't know actually what's happening. But, hope is what we have, right?" Kira said.

US searchers are in Japan searching for Taylor. In fact a team from Fairfax County, VA is there. US Senator Mark Warner told them Taylor is missing. Searchers are asking crews in her hard-hit community to keep an eye out.

So far, more than 1500 people re-posted Kira's message. At one point "Taylor Anderson" was a trending topic on twitter feeds in Canada.

"So as long as people are keeping hope alive, then the message keeps going on," Kira said.

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