The family of a Southern California yoga enthusiast who disappeared during a retreat in Guatemala in October last year are expressing frustration over their inability to speak with the last person known to have seen the victim alive.
About the disappearance: Nancy Ng, a 29-year-old special needs teacher from Monterey Park, California, went missing on Oct.19 during a yoga retreat at Lake Atitlán in Guatemala. Video believed to capture the last moments of Nancy alive shows her paddling a kayak, smiling and waving to someone unseen in the distance.
Over three months later, her disappearance has remained a mystery and the lack of progress in the investigation has frustrated the victim’s family.
Desperate for answers: Determined to find her, Nancy's family traveled to Guatemala and hired a private search and rescue team to scour the lake. Despite having helicopters, drones and boats to aid them in their search, the family noted that not being able to reach key witness Christina Blazek directly is a major hurdle.
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"We want answers,” Nicky Ng, Nancy's sister told KTLA. “We want to know what happened to Nancy that day and where to find her. We want that information to come from the only witness that was with Nancy at the time of her disappearance, and we want that through official channels."
What the retreat organizers say: Lee and Elaine Beal, proprietors of Kayak Guatemala that organized the retreat, told "Good Morning America" in November that 10 people went on the kayaking trip, but only eight returned. Ng and another woman reportedly went paddling further into the lake. While the other woman eventually returned alone, Ng has not been seen since. What the proprietors found unusual was that the remaining group remained silent and left Guatemala within 12 hours of the suspected accident.
What Blazek’s lawyer says: Through her attorney, Chris Gardner, Blazek claims she warned Nancy about the dangers of swimming in the area and even attempted to rescue her after she disappeared underwater. However, the Ng family remains unconvinced and emphasizes their desire to hear directly from Blazek through official channels to piece together Nancy's final moments.
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What's next: The incident remains under investigation by the Guatemalan government. The FBI, which is aiding the investigation, has yet to identify any evidence of foul play. A GoFundMe campaign which has been organized to aid search efforts and support Ng’s family has so far raised $123,966, as of this writing.
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