Tuesday was a bittersweet day for Maureen Himebo. It was her son’s 43rd birthday. It was also a reminder of his disappearance over 30 years ago.
“He will always be in my heart,” she said. “Always, always, always in my heart.”
On November 25, 1991, Maureen left her 11-year-old son, Mark Himebo, at her home in Middle Township, New Jersey, to shop. She hasn’t seen Mark since.
The boy left home to watch firefighters fight a swamp fire. He has since disappeared, with only a pair of sneakers found on a Delaware Bay beach near his home as the only trace of him.
“It was a cold, windy November night and it was starting to get dark, so it felt awful,” Maureen said. “And those minutes turned into hours. It took hours and days. And we spent days looking for him. Then weeks. Then months. And now. , many years have passed, so we have not given up.”
Over the past 30 years, there has been a renewed effort to find the marks. Now, recent technological advances are giving investigators hope that they will eventually find a breakthrough in the unsolved case.
Middle Township Police, along with the Cape May County Prosecutor’s Office, announced Wednesday that it has signed a contract with a company to use artificial intelligence (AI) services to assist in the search for Mark.
“Investigations can collect vast amounts of data and evidence, and AI has the potential to help find patterns and connections in this trove of information that may not be immediately obvious.” A spokesperson for the Middle Township Police wrote. “Law enforcement agencies are increasingly adopting new technologies to advance investigations. Vollee AI services can help improve the efficiency and effectiveness of these investigations. Vollee is built on Microsoft’s Azure cloud services. Using Neural AI Assistant enables advanced computing and processing capabilities.”
Maureen appreciates the continued efforts of investigators to help find her son.
“They never seem to give up on Mark,” she said. “I know the police chief told me that he was very excited because he seemed to have what it takes to bring this artificial intelligence into the police station.”
Whatever happens with new technology, Maureen remains hopeful of reuniting with her son.
“I hope we get an answer,” she said. “But my most likely answer is that he will come home. will find out and I will be shut down.”