Early Wednesday morning last week, Terra Gehrig got a text from her friend, Sydney Loofe.
Loofe, 24, had gone on a date the night before with a woman she met online.
It went well, Loofe told Gehrig, and the pair was planning to go out again that night.
But Loofe didn’t show up for work Thursday and hasn’t been heard from since.
“It doesn’t feel like this is happening,” said Gehrig, 23, who has known Loofe for about five years. “It feels like just a dream — this is only stuff you see on TV.”
Authorities suspect that Loofe may be in danger.
Loofe last was seen in Wilber, Nebraska, on Wednesday, Lincoln Police Chief Jeff Bliemeister said Tuesday. He declined to say whether police have contacted the woman from the date because he didn’t want to jeopardize the investigation.
“The circumstances surrounding (Loofe’s) disappearance are concerning,” he said.
Loofe posted a photo on social media the night before she went missing. In the photo, she was wearing a white coat with a cream-colored shirt.
Her family reported her missing to police on Thursday.
Bliemeister said his department is working with the Saline County Sheriff’s Office and other law enforcement agencies to find Loofe. Lincoln police officers have conducted interviews and followed leads, but anyone with information should call the department at 402-441-6000.
Loofe has a spinal disorder and walks differently, Gehrig said.
She also has distinctive tattoos, according to flyers being shared on social media.
She has the words “Everything will be wonderful someday” on her arm, a yin yang sign below her elbow and “Believe” on her wrist.
She works as a cashier at a Lincoln Menards and always called her manager if she couldn’t attend work, Gehrig said.
Her brother declined to comment Tuesday.
Her mother, Susie Loofe, posted on Facebook: “Please continue sharing, posting, searching and praying. We need Sydney to come home safe and soon.”
Many are asking people to wear green — the color for missing children awareness — today and share a photo online to show their support for the family.
Gehrig said she has been sharing flyers of Loofe, speaking with Loofe’s sister and meeting with other friends to figure out how to spread the word.
She still has hope that Loofe will turn up, unharmed.
“I trust that the Lincoln Police Department is using the resources and doing what they can to find her. I have faith that they’re going to bring her home to us safe.”
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