Video shows how drone is helping the search for missing Andreen McDonald

Volunteers searched from ground, air for woman presumed dead

By Courtney Friedman - VJ, Reporter, Robert Samarron - Photojournalist

SAN ANTONIO - They searched from the ground and in the air.

Law enforcement and community members pulled out all the stops to find missing 29-year-old Andreen McDonald, who is presumed dead. She was reported missing Friday and disappeared under suspicious circumstances.

Andreen McDonald's husband, Andre McDonald, has been arrested for allegedly tampering with evidence in connection with the case.

The disappearance has rocked the community, resulting in people from all over the area braving freezing temperatures to help search for Andreen McDonald.

"It was humbling to see all of the fellow human beings that know that her life is important," said David Hook, who volunteered in the search Tuesday morning.

Hook works with drones for a living as the president of Droneport Texas, but on Tuesday, he was called out as a volunteer to support Bexar County deputies with their drone.

"Helping them as a visual observer. While the pilot is busy making sure the drone is flying the way it's supposed to, there's another set of eyes making sure that there's no helicopter that's going to cross its path or no bird that it could run into and harm," Hook said.

The area they searched Tuesday near Blanco Road along Camp Bullis had a lot of high brush.

"This is what it looks like from the pilot's screen as they're flying overhead," Hook said, pointing to video he took Tuesday. "You can pick up shadows, and depending upon the contrast that you set into the camera, it can pull out certain colors. So this is why it's important in a search and rescue or search and recovery if you know what the people were wearing, to be able to cue on those particular colors."

There are also specific things they look for in a recovery mission.

"The carrion birds -- if they find a body you'll see them circling," he said.

It was a difficult search physically and emotionally for a community hoping to bring Andreen McDonald's family the answers they desperately need.

The Bexar County Sheriff's Office said it will hold another search on Thursday. It will announce what time and where the search will take place Wednesday through its social media pages. 

Anyone with information about Andreen McDonald's whereabouts is asked to call 210-335-6070 or email BCSOTIPS@bexar.org.

Copyright 2019 by KSAT - All rights reserved.