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HANNAH UPP: NYC SCHOOLTEACHER VANISHES

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« on: September 07, 2008, 09:48:12 pm »
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Missing in New York City: Hannah Upp
Posted at 9:12 AM Sep 05, 2008
No one has seen 23-year-old New York City school teacher Hannah Emily Upp since Friday, August 29, 2008.

Her roommates say Hannah was planning a weekend getaway. She was going to spend some time with her mom in Philadelphia and probably return to NYC on Saturday, no later than Sunday. They last saw her around 2 that afternoon.

Some time that day she used her debit card to go to a movie by herself at a Times Square movie theater.

When Hannah didn't come home on Sunday, her roommates began to worry. Phone calls went straight to voice mail.

When they entered her bedroom Monday evening, frantic with worry, they found Hannah's handbag. Everything she might need was there -- an ATM card, her cell, her passport and her subway card.

Hannah was supposed to go back to work on Tuesday, Sept. 2, at the Thurgood Marshall Academy for Learning and Social Change, where she taught middle school Spanish. The first day of her second year as a teacher passed, still no Hannah.

Now there is a Facebook group dedicated to finding Hannah, as well as several blog posts and news articles.

No one knows where she is.

Hannah Upp graduated from Bryn Mawr in 2007. Following graduation she moved to New York, where she secured her job at Thurgood Marshall and began doing volunteer work for AIDS organizations. The Daily News reported that she had also begun working on a master's in education at Pace University.

Hannah had wide-ranging, unusual interests. An article published in the Daily News on July 19, 2008 featured a photo of Hannah with a couple of friends holding bags of bagels. According to the piece, Hannah and her friends were "freegans."

Freegans are a subculture of people, usually vegans, who only eat food that is free. Freegans find what they need by scavenging on the street; the practice is called Dumpster diving. To be a freegan is to reject capitalist values and the wastefulness of society at large. It's an act of defiance, a turning away from crass, consumer culture. Since May 8 this year, Hannah Upp had even been a member of a Meetup group for people interested in "NYC Dumpster Diving."

While a member of the Bryn Mawr and Haverford Chamber Singers, Hannah wrote about a choir trip to Ghana for Bryn Mawr Now. Her article revealed a great deal of insight and a compelling way with words. Hannah wrote:

Returning to Bryn Mawr also meant that I was faced with the challenge of explaining how I spent my winter break, and I have surprised myself with my descriptions of the trip. Instead of the details that would excite a thrill-seeking traveler [...] I find myself describing the emotion I felt while we sang a spiritual at the banks of the river where slaves were bathed for the last time before being sent off on the Middle Passage. I recall the power of the hospitality of the family that welcomed me into their home, where I would share a small bed with three others in what turned into a very cozy night. I refer to the instant connection developed with the members of other choirs when we were able to engage through a song that we had specifically learned to sing together. As corny as it sounds, music did become the instant bridge. Even though I had never met this person singing next to me and any objective comparison of our lives would indicate a complete lack of common ground, we were able to interact and share something that needs no explanation...
A fellow Bryn Mawr student, writing in her tumblelog about Hannah's disappearance, called the young teacher "one of the kindest people Iíve ever met." The size of the Facebook group devoted to finding Hannah is further testament to the number of people who know her and now find themselves worried about the teacher with the easy, winning smile. In a comment on the group page, a friend named Danika Hunt wrote, "I am completely distraught right now, actively keeping my mind aside whenever I can, because I can't imagine my Hannah in this situation. Please return home safely. You're in mine and my family's prayers. I miss you."

Corey Godbey wrote that he was "Hannah's cousin Corey from KS." Godbey continued, "I want to thank each one of you that has joined this group... and also ask you to join me... As we continue to pray for Hannah's safety and ask God to reveal her whereabouts to us... we also need to pray (believing) for the person(s) that DO know where she is. Someone does. Somewhere. Pray with me that that person(s) will reveal what they know in the opportune moment..."

Not all disappearances are the result of a criminal act. They can come from depression, from misadventure, from someone simply wanting to just get the hell away from it all. It seems clear that in this case, Hannah Upp's disappearance was completely unexpected and to those who know and love her, cause for great suspicion and worry.

Dropping into the subjective blogger's voice now -- I couldn't help but notice that Hannah Upp disappeared just two days before the murder of Pace University honors student Kevin Pravia. Pravia was apparently murdered by a homeless man, Jeromie Cancel, whom Pravia met early in the morning on August 31. Cancel accompanied Pravia to his apartment. After Pravia fell asleep, Cancel took a number of electronic items and left -- only to return and strangle Kevin Pravia as an afterthought.

Freegans with jobs and residences like Hannah Upp would surely come into quite a bit of contact with the homeless, who sometimes have no choice but to Dumpster-dive.

Let's hope Hannah didn't encounter Jeromie Cancel or someone like him. Since it seems as though Cancel has been more than willing to confess to what he's done, it is unlikely she ran into him, or he might have already said so. Still, there had to be a certain danger factor in pursuing the freegan lifestyle, since among the homeless, there will always be a small number of people like Jeromie Cancel, who have profound and potentially dangerous emotional and mental problems.

If you think you have information that might help in the search for Hannah Emily Upp, please call (800) 577-TIPS or get in touch with Detective Perez at the 30th Precinct Detective Squad, by calling either 212-690-8842, or 212-690-8843.
http://www.truecrimereport.com/2008/09/missing_in_new_york_city_hanna.php
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openmnded
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« Reply #1 on: September 07, 2008, 10:07:27 pm »
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What time did she go see a movie? What movie did she see? Are there surveilance at the movie? What about her home? The doors lock automatically behind you, but her keys were found along with her wallet, cell, atm card, subway pass. When was her last atm transaction? Has anyone asked her Mom about the weekend getaway? Her cell phone and other items were found by her roommates, Manny Ramirez and Samantha Gallardo on Monday evening. What time did they report her missing? Friends had been trying to contact her since Thursday,but calls went straight to voicemail. SOMEONE turned off her cell phone? Hannah? Someone else?? I wonder if she was the type that always carried her cell, and always had it on?

One man's trash is another man's treasure. It sounds like although Hannah enjoyed dumpster diving, this wasn't her passion.  She did it for something to do. I don't believe that Freegan is a cult, but I would have to investigate this topic some more. 
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