Colin W. Gillis, 18, of Tupper Lake is considered a missing person. Anyone with more information about his whereabouts should contact Ray Brook Police at 897-2000.
While the search for Tupper Lake teen Colin Gillis continues, a special night of laughter is being planned to help aid in the costs associated with the effort to find him.
Off The Comedy Productions will present a fundraising comedy show to aid in the funds being used to try and bring Gillis home at the Knights Of Columbus in Tupper Lake.
“The comedians offer the whole spectrum of adult comedy,” event organizer Tracy Sparks said. “This is sure to be a really great show.”
The doors will open at 6 p.m. and the show will begin at 7:30 p.m.
There will be snacks available and a cash bar. Friends and classmates of Colin will be volunteering at the event, handling raffle tickets, cleaning up and serving drinks during intermission.
“The people that knew him want to help and do what we can to keep his name out there and let people know we’re still looking,” Sparks said. “This event will be fun and it could bring some humor back to the community, if even for an hour. We want to do whatever we can to help and to keep up hope and keep searching.”
John Gillis, Colin’s father, said he appreciates the continued support the community has shown over the last few months.
“Colin is not just our kid anymore, he’s the communities kid, and that’s how everyone has treated him,” John said. “It’s been emotionally overwhelming what the community has done for us and for Colin. I can’t thank everyone enough for volunteering their time through the search and organizing the fundraisers. It’s really helped our family.”
There will five comedians from New York City, including Mike Madden, Steve Sarsfield, Matt Kelly, Shawn Gillie and Headliner Sandy Beach.
Half of the ticket proceeds will go directly towards the Search for Colin Gillis Fund and half will go to the comedians. The comedians have also purchased a 32-inch flat screen TV to be raffled off. Raffle tickets will cost $5 each.
“The comedians have been great to work with and have been truly gung-ho about working with us for this,” Sparks said.
Tickets for the show are on sale now or can be purchased the night of the show and are $20. For information or to order tickets, call Sparks at 359-8144.
It has been three months since Colin Gillis, an 18-year-old premed student on spring break from SUNY Brockport, was reported missing after leaving a social gathering with friends on March 11. He was last seen walking along Route 3 near the Franklin/St. Lawrence County line around 1 a.m.
According to New York State Police Investigator Sean Finn, the search for Gillis has remained active over the last few months with continued ground searches by the forest rangers.
“We have not stopped and we’re going to continue to search for Colin,” Finn said.
The police have been actively following any lead submitted to the department about the possible whereabouts of Gillis. Investigators have not found any sign of Gillis, with the exception of of a few personal items located March 12 along State Route 3.
Department of Environmental Conservation Forest Rangers have performed land, water and air searches throughout specific areas in the Piercefield near Sevey Corners.
“We’ve covered all trailheads and the rangers have performed extensive searches of the location he was last seen,” Finn said.
Police have also been investigating any rumors leads submitted from local residents.
“Every rumor and every piece of town gossip we have looked into and small pieces of gossip and rumors have been disproven by talking to witnesses and others who were there,” Finn said.
At this time, investigators do not need volunteers to aide the search effort.
“Without new information, rangers can cover and well document all areas they search,” Finn said. “At this time, there is no need for a large scale search,” Finn said.
For weeks after his disappearance, over 200 area volunteers, forest rangers, State Police, local emergency response agencies and search and rescue teams searched more than 2,000 acres of land, miles of the Raquette River and both Raquette Pond and Piercefield Flow.
Ten days after Gillis went missing, the search was downgraded to limited continuous status.
The family has offered a $10,000 reward for anyone who provides information leading to Colin’s whereabouts. Anyone with information is asked to contact Ray Brook Police at 897-2000.