Search teams trace new clue in plane hunt

Published 6:00 am Friday, November 23, 2001

Mississippi Civil Air Patrol officials said they will betracking down several leads today as they keep up their search fora Brookhaven pilot who has been missing since Thursday night.

“We’re going to continue today,” said Johnny Taylor, searchcoordinator, following unsuccessful efforts to locate Jeff Allen,46, of 2712 Nola Road, from Saturday through Tuesday.

Taylor said searchers will be running down several leads,including one from an area east of Bogue Chitto in southern LincolnCounty.

“That indicates he may have gone farther north than we thought,”Taylor said, adding that pilots sometimes following highways whileflying.

Allen was last heard from Friday around 2 a.m. while he and Dr.Larry Stewart, of McComb, were flying back from Ocean Springs afterperforming in a band at the Grand Casino in Biloxi.

After landing his plane in McComb, Stewart was unable to contactAllen again. Stewart reported Allen missing after he did not showup for a Friday meeting with the pilot.

Benton Furlow, Brookhaven Airport manager, said Allen had beenflying between Brookhaven, Tylertown and Ocean Springs frequentlyduring the last three weeks. Allen would fly to work at a weldingshop in Tylertown before going to the coast and then back toBrookhaven.

Taylor said The Air Force Rescue Coordination Center in Langley,Va., is in charge of the search effort and will determine itsduration. He said they have been supplied search data and woulddecide whether to continue the search Thursday.

Taylor asked the public to report anything they think would helpin the search. Lincoln County Civil Defense Director CliffordGaley, who has been assisting with the search, said people may callthe sheriff’s department and their information would be relayed tothe search teams.

“Every bit of information helps,” Taylor said.