Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

Jayme Closs found alive January 11, 2019

Filed under: Uncategorized — Audrey Kletscher Helbling @ 10:43 AM
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

A widely circulated photo of Jayme Closs, a face we all came to know in the past three months.


I ARRIVED HOME from last evening’s poetry reading in Northfield on a high—the euphoric feeling a writer experiences from sharing her passion with an appreciative audience among other gifted poets.

But then I turned on the TV to watch the 9 p.m. news. And my joy doubled, no quadrupled, with the news that missing teen Jayme Closs of Barron, Wisconsin, was found late Thursday afternoon. Alive. The 13-year-old has been missing since her parents, James and Denise Closs, were discovered shot to death in their home on October 15, 2018.

Those murders and missing child case have been major news here in Minnesota and Wisconsin. Even nationally early on. But three months out, the hope that Jayme would be found alive faded. Not into hopelessness—because her family and many others never gave up hope. But reality wedged into thoughts as many of us remembered the high profile abduction of Jacob Wetterling in central Minnesota in October 1989. It took 27 years to find Jacob, shot to death by his abductor. We all know that if a missing child is not found within days of his/her disappearance, the likelihood of finding that child alive decreases substantially.

But now we have Jayme who, according to media reports, escaped from a home near Gordon in rural northwestern Wisconsin when she was left alone and sought help from a woman walking her dog. A suspect is now in custody.

The Barron County Sheriff’s Department has scheduled a news conference for 10 a.m. today. Yes, I’ll be watching. And reminding myself of the importance of never giving up hope. For hope, too, is poetry.

© Copyright 2019 Audrey Kletscher Helbling


16 Responses to “Jayme Closs found alive”

  1. Missy's Crafty Mess Says:

    I got home from grocery shopping last just as that news was breaking. Many prayers for her and her family as they work through the aftermath of this horrific tragedy.

  2. Sandra Van Erp Says:

    That was some news conference, whew. You’ve said it all so well. I was thankful faith and God got a mention. Now, what can be learned. What new levels a school official experiences is for sure life altering., Certainly professionally. Praise God.

  3. Gunny Says:

    I am VERY happy that she has been found and is now safe! The perpetrators of this type of crime are of the lowest of the low.

    I had an English professor (Moorhead State) who stated “The reason we are alive today is that someone, somewhere decided not to kill us.” Now, that may sound pretty cold, but what this young lady endured is pretty cold!

    Long story about a bird the 1st Skirt (female Marine First Sergeant) had pinned to her wall shortened to: Not everyone who does you wrong is your enemy and not everyone who helps you are your friends.

    May all of you live in peace, may you all go about you days and nights under God’s protection.

  4. Valerie Says:

    It is very good news about Jayme.
    And it was fun to hear you read your poetry last night!

  5. Brenda R Says:

    I was thrilled to hear the news last night of Jayme’s escape! I was able to watch part of the news conference this morning and all of the one this afternoon. She was such a brave girl to escape & leave and thanks to God for the dog walker and that she is now safe! It’s incomprehensible what she will have to deal with as she comes home to her family and friends. Prayers will continue for her as she deals with life without her parents.

  6. We were so happy to hear that Jayme was safe after so long. I know she has a difficult road ahead in healing and moving on but she will continue to be in our prayers.

    • Yes, Jayme, her family, her community, her classmates and many more remain in need of prayer. I believe Jayme will find the strength to recover. She is a remarkable young woman with an incredibly loving family and community.

  7. Bella Says:

    What a miracle for her to have been found alive. Prayers will be needed for her as the healing process has just begun as she tries to make sense of it all.

  8. Miraculous indeed that this poor girl was found alive! 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.