Joliet mother organizes search to find missing son

Police, fire will resume their search

ewell Robinson (center) talks with Councilwoman Sherri Reardon on Tuesday after making an appeal to the Joliet City Council for help in finding her mission son, Robert Long, who disappeared on Thursday. April 17, 2024

The mother of Robert Long is asking for help as she prepares to lead a search party Friday for her missing son.

Long, 37, of Joliet is believed to have disappeared on the night of April 11.

Jewell Robinson appeared before the Joliet City Council on Tuesday to ask for city help in finding her son.

“My son’s never been in trouble,” Robinson told the council. “All I’m asking for is some help in finding my son.”

Robinson and supporters are organizing a volunteer search party that will meet at 10 a.m. Friday outside her home at 326 N. Bluff St.

It’s the last place where she saw her son before leaving for work on the morning of April 11, Robinson previously told the Herald-News. Her son had lost his job with a local staffing agency just two weeks previously. Robinson lives in the River Walk Homes apartment complex, which is located along the Des Plaines River.

Apparently prepared for the worst, Long asked if the city could search the Des Plaines River.

Fire Chief Jeff Carey speaks at the Crisis First Aid refresher course for the Joliet Fire Department Station One crew on Wednesday, July 12th, 2023 in Joliet.

She learned that the Joliet Fire Department was on the river Tuesday afternoon in a boat with sonar equipment to see if they could detect anything.

Fire Chief Jeff Carey said the search crew had to leave the river after 45 minutes when they were called to a fire. But the search would continue Wednesday, Carey said.

Joliet Police Chief William Evans said the department looked into the use of police dogs to help in the search. But he said too much time has passed for the dogs to pick up a scent. Mayor Terry D’Arcy told Robinson that the city will support her in the search of her son.

“We’re doing whatever we can to help you,” D’Arcy said.

According to the description put out by Joliet police, Long is Black, between 5 feet, 6 inches and 5 feet, 8 inches tall, 150 pounds, with short black hair, brown eyes and a mustache with goatee.

According to a leaflet put out by his family, Long was last seen between 9 and 10 p.m. on April 11. He was wearing a gray jacket, T-shirt, blue jeans and dark-colored glasses.

Long’s family is asking anyone with information about him to call 872-724-9334.