SILVER SPRINGS - The family of a 67-year-old Silver Spring woman who has been missing for three months hopes a reward will lead to new information about her disappearance.
A $5,000 reward has been offered by the Carole Sund/Carrington Foundation for information about the mysterious circumstances surrounding the disappearance of Barbara Hoover.
Hoover was last seen Sept. 10 at her home in Silver Springs.
Surrounded by Hoover's family members at a press conference Monday, Lt. John Arndell of the Lyon County Sheriff's Office said nothing has surfaced to help investigators learn what happened to Hoover.
At the time of her disappearance, her husband, Bob Hoover, 73, told authorities he went to Fernley to run errands, came home, and found his wife gone. Also missing from the house were two suitcases and clothing.
Hoover reportedly said his wife had been stressed over family problems, "and talked about going away to clear her mind. She was supposed to go to the coast with unnamed friends," Arndell said. "He believed that was a ruse to throw him off."
Hoover's children said their mother would never just take off and not contact them.
Derenda Beard of Redding, Calif., said she and her mother were close. The longest period of time that ever passed without a telephone conversation between them was three weeks, she said.
"It's just like she was plucked off the property and was gone," she said. "My dad said she had credit cards, but there's no record of her using anything anywhere."
Dan Hoover of Elko said his mother was a homebody who would never simply leave.
"My mom wasn't a very social person at all. Her family was her life. She stayed at home and never had a job," Hoover said. "My mom felt uncomfortable around crowds. We know she wouldn't run off with so-called friends."
He believes his mother is dead, but not knowing her fate is difficult, he said.
"My mom would have been in contact with somebody if she was alive, especially my sister. They were very close."
Hoover questioned why other missing-person cases have attracted so much media attention.
He referred to Bertha Anguiano, a Carson City mother missing since Nov. 10; and North Dakota student Dru Sjodin, who was last seen Nov. 22.
"My mom has been missing three months - and nothing," he said. "It seems like it has been covered up and blown over."
Arndell said he and the family believe someone took Barbara Hoover from her home. Her 1999 Dodge pickup was left behind, and he doubts a 67-year-old woman could have walked away carrying two heavy suitcases.
"To date, we have no evidence whatsoever that points to harm to Barbara and no evidence that she would harm herself."
The Hoover home has been searched three times, he said, along with a second home owed by Bob Hoover and property at Lake Lahontan.
Arndell said the husband, who is on the Silver Springs Town Board, has been cooperative with police, but the relationship between the children and their father has turned "contentious."
There has been no activity on bank accounts or credit cards nor any financial transactions. Police said the missing woman had no serious mental problems that would cause her to wander off.
In the meantime, the family can only wait.
"It's just the worst thing knowing I'll never talk to her again or hug her," said Dan Hoover.
Barbara Hoover is 5 feet, 10 inches tall and weighs about 170 pounds. She has brownish-gray hair and hazel eyes.
Anyone with information should call Lt. Arndell at 775-577-5026 or dispatch at 775-577-5023.