PORTLAND, Ore. – Desiree Young, the biological mother of Kyron Horman, missing since June 4, read a short statement Thursday asking the boy's stepmother, Terri Horman, to cooperate with the investigation.
Terri Horman has become a focus in the search for Kyron, and on Wednesday, she retained the services of a prominent local defense attorney.
"We implore Terri Horman to fully cooperate with investigators to bring Kyron home," Desiree Young said Thursday. Accompanying her were her ex-husband and Kyron's father, Kaine Horman, and her current husband and Kyron's stepfather, Tony Young.
Terri Horman was not at the press conference, which lasted just about two minutes.
- Watch Desiree Young's statement
- Watch this story
- Watch: Terri Horman retains prominent attorney
- Read: Terri Horman retains prominent attorney
Desiree Young, who spoke through tears and had to pause at some points, also said that "Kyron is still alive" and that they continue to work with investigators to find him. She read from a prepared statement.
She asked the public to continue to be vigilant and to keep looking for the second-grader, who has been missing for nearly a month.
Massive searches following his reported disappearance from his small rural school on the outskirts of Portland have turned up no clues as to his location, according to investigators.
Terri Horman was the last person to see Kyron after she dropped him off at school on June 4. He was not discovered to be missing until nearly eight hours later when he failed to disembark a school bus as scheduled in the afternoon.
Terri Horman took a photo of Kyron with his science project at the school's science fair, which took place before classes the morning he disappeared. Horman told police she saw him heading to class and then left the school. He was marked absent from the first class of the day.
Certain news outlets, that the family said they believe have been fair in their reporting and kept the focus on finding Kyron, were invited to the church across from Kyron’s school for a meeting.
At the meeting, Kyron’s father, mother and stepfather laid out some ground rules and allowed the media to submit questions.
The family spent more than an hour going over those questions, making calls to see what they could and could not say.
While the media wasn’t allowed to record their answers, the family shared what their days have been like and what they miss most about Kyron – things like his toothless smile, his belly laugh and just the sounds kids make being kids.
They also mentioned Kyron’s love of sushi and Mac and Cheese. They said he’s allergic to bees and has a v-shaped birthmark on his forehead that might stand out if he’s upset.
The media did ask questions about Terri but the family declined to answer them because of the ongoing investigation. The family did say they have been briefed on the criminal investigation and even after that are still optimistic Kyron will be found alive.
Before going to the meeting with the media, Desiree stopped by what’s being called the “Wall of Hope”, a chain-link fence outside Skyline School lined with messages of hope for Kyron’s safe return.
She left her own personal note for her son and read a few of the others people have left before heading to the church.
Desiree Young lives in Medford and had visitation rights with Kyron.
Text of Desiree Young's statement:
"Kyron is still alive. We would like all of you, everyone, to continue to get his face out there, to continue looking for him in your day-to-day activities. We pray each day for Kyron. We are working with investigators daily to bring Kyron home. We are extremely confident in how the investigation is going to bring him home to us. We implore Terri Horman to fully cooperate with investigators to bring Kyron home."