CHULA VISTA, Calif. – The search for a missing Chula Vista mother expanded over the weekend when a helicopter pilot flew the family over the sand dunes in Glamis, one of the last known spots she was seen alive and a place she loved to visit.
Tired and exhausted, the family of Maya Millete was surprised to get a little assistance from above.
“That came out of left field for us,” said Richard Drouaillet, Millete’s brother-in-law. “We were so happy because it’s different when you got a bird’s eye view, you can see everything.”
Millete went missing from the home she shared with her husband and three kids on Jan. 7. Her car was left in the driveway, her cell phone was turned off and her credit cards have gone unused. A search warrant was served at the home, but police say there are still no persons of interest.
“We want answers, we need answers,” Drouaillet said.
The family spent the weekend at the dunes on foot and ATVs looking for signs that Millete may have been there but found nothing. Before they left, a local business owner, Michael Marnelli Jr. of Glamis Dunes and Storage, offered to sponsor the family to get a free ride in a helicopter to help with the search.
“This is probably the first time I’ve been involved in looking for a person,” said Dereck Bielke, owner of Optic Helicopters, who gave the family a ride.
“In two hours we covered about a week’s worth of ground. This is an off-road community here and anyone in this industry treats each other like family.”
Unfortunately, the search yielded little results. There were a few things that caught their eye from above. The family dropped GPS pins on their phones and locals have offered to go back during the week to take a closer look.
“I was glad I was able to help out, but at the same time, I was hoping for better,” Bielke said. “I do fly around here a lot though. So, I’ll always be looking.”