JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The abrupt disappearance this week of a 21-year-old Mandarin woman has her family looking for answers as the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office investigates.
Savannah Page Gold never showed up to work Wednesday evening, according to a police report. Instead, relatives received text messages from her phone saying she met someone and was running away with him.
Gold's brother later found her Kia parked outside the Bonefish Grill on San Jose Boulevard, where they work, according to the report. The car was unlocked and had a flat tire. Her purse, wallet and ID were found inside.
No one has been able to reach Gold over the phone. Several text messages and calls placed by family have not been returned. Police efforts to locate the phone also have not been successful.
"There's got to be witnesses out there, so I am begging and pleading for anyone to come forward. If you saw Savannah, please let us know," her mother, Sherri Gold, told News4Jax.
Her parents told police Gold left for work Wednesday evening. Her father later received a garbled text message from his daughter's phone saying Gold was leaving town, without disclosing where she was headed.
"hey i just eanted to tell you and mom i met a really great guy and were running away together i love him and were leaving to ight ill call you later when we get tk where we are glong," one garbled text said, according to the report.
Her brother also received a text message from the same phone about 6:10 p.m. that day.
"heyi quit im leavingwith my boyfriend i cant do this shit anymore im fine justwant to get away," the second text stated.
Gold's family suggested those texts were out of character, noting they did not appear to be typed in her style. Plus, they noted, she wasn't involved romantically with anyone.
"My husband received this text, and I immediately look at it and say, 'This is not from Savannah.' I knew right away that's not how she speaks, types, nothing," her mother said.
What also puzzled loved ones was the flat tire, which police said appeared to have been punctured. Gold's family said it was a brand new tire that had just replaced one damaged the night before.
"She's always responsible and keeps in contact with me. 'Hey mom, I'm going to be out all night with friends,'" Sherri Gold said. "The reason for that -- I have stage 4 colon cancer, so we are very close, and she's always kept that relationship. That's my baby girl."
Investigators also spoke with several associates. One said they texted with her about 4 p.m. Wednesday, and she said she was working that day and apparently changing a tire. Another said they hadn't spoken in days.
Gold's father, Daniel, said his daughter has lots of friends and always strives to help those in need.
Her family said they just hope she didn't get caught up in doing a good deed that went wrong.
"She and I are extremely close. That's why this is so hard," Sherri Gold said. "She was a hard worker. She works two jobs. She's always trying to help other people. She's always trying to save somebody or some poor soul, giving all her money."
Friday evening, neighbors passed out flyers in Mandarin with Gold's picture and description.
"I texted everybody I knew and they all came out and they've all been sending pictures and making copies and everybody is just trying to help," said Eileen Tucker, Gold's neighbor. "We want her back. So please, everybody, help us find her. We're beating the streets. Just help us look for her."
News4Jax crime and safety analyst Gil Smith said police will process Gold's car to find any evidence of foul play, look for fingerprints on her credit card and ID and could even go as far as looking for shoe impressions on the floorboards. He said they will check for any surveillance that might have captured what happened and will look into her past relationships and social media, because her texts mentioned running away with a boyfriend.
"I don't think anybody would want to hurt her, but she's full of love," Daniel Gold said. "She's kind, empathetic, bull-headed, but she's a lover of life, likes to go out and dance and have fun with her friends, not someone who is vengeful."
The family can't fathom what might have happened to her or why; they're just praying she's found safe.
"We just want her here," Sherri Gold said. " ... We want to know if she's OK or not. This is just a torturous rift right now."
Anyone with information about this case is asked to call the Sheriff's Office at (904) 630-0500 or Crime Stoppers at (866) 845-TIPS.