The Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier">

Missing Girl's Family Has Faced Adversity Before

The Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier

Groups of volunteer searches fanned out in several areas of Evansdale Saturday, July 14, 2012, looking for two missing girls. (MATTHEW PUTNEY / Courier Photo Editor)

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By Belinda Yeung

EVANSDALE, Iowa - Drew and Heather Collins are no strangers to adversity. Their faith in God, they say, gets them through trying times.

Friends say the family of six has plenty of experience.

In November 2010, Heather almost died. Her heart gave out and she needed to be shocked back to life, Heather and local emergency workers said.

Drew left the house just before Heather’s heart problem, but returned to get his wallet to find his wife on the floor. He called 911 and started cardiopulmonary resuscitation.

Evansdale paramedics arrived quickly, officials said, and used a defibrillator to revive her.

“She’s one of our miracles,” said Lisa Deitrick, an Evansdale Fire Rescue emergency medical technician. “Now this happens.”

Last week, friends say Heather started having problems with her pacemaker requiring hospitalization.

Yet, all her and her family can think about is Elizabeth and Lyric. Finding the girls is their only concern.

“I’m grateful for everyone who has came out to help,” Heather said.

Clark Way of Des Moines, one of Drew’s best friends, and his girlfriend, Renee Wrabek, said the Collins family are the best people they’ve ever met. Even though Heather’s health hasn’t been the best lately, friend say the Collinses and their four children help others whenever they can and volunteer within the community.

That’s one of the reasons why the outpouring of support from the Cedar Valley and beyond is so enormous, friends said.

“Talk about a family that’s gone through hell and back. Now their child goes missing,” Wrabek said.

The Collins own Planetary Tree Service in Evansdale. Marlene Schaefer, who also owns a local tree service with her husband, volunteered to hand out food and drinks on Sunday.

Though their business competitors, Schaefer said the Collinses are good friends.

“He (Drew) keeps teasing me. ‘Why don’t you work for me?’” Schaefer said. “They are remarkable, good people.”

Video


The Life & Love of Elizabeth Collins Celebration


Parents of Elizabeth Collins Speak to the Media on 12/13


Authorities Confident Remains Belong to Missing Girls


Authorities Announce Discovery of Two Bodies

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Tip Line

Authorities are asking anyone who has any information on the case to call the tip line, at 319-232-6682 or send an e-mail to ourmissingiowagirls@dps.state.ia.us.

A reward of $150,000 has been established for information that leads to an arrest and conviction.



Timeline

Friday, July 13, 2012
  • 2:48PM Cousins Lyric Cook & Elizabeth Collins are reported missing      
  • 2:50PM Law enforcement begin searching the girls
  • 4PM Firefighters find the girls’ bike at Meyers Lake
  • 4:30PM Search of Meyers Lake begins
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