THREE RIVERS, Mich. (WOOD) - A prayer circle for a 20-year-old Michigan State University student, missing since July 22, was held Thursday evening near his home in Three Rivers.
Marco Drayton is slated to be a junior at MSU and had previously spent two semesters at West Point.
Drayton was last seen at buying a tool kit at a grocery store. He was first thought to be voluntarily missing after he did not show up at a friend's house that same night.
Then, a day later, some of his belongings, including some neatly-folded clothes, wallet and phone, were found at a public boat access on Harwood Lake. There was no sign of a struggle, according to his family.
Friends and family told 24 Hour News 8 that Drayton is adventurous, but that he wouldn't run away.
"When we realized that Marco hadn't talked to any of his friends or any of his family at all, we started to get worried," said his sister Irene Drayton.
The concern quickly spread.
"I've printed off about 200 flyers," said Drayton's friend Hillary Kellogg. "I've gone to every business in Three Rivers and given them information. I've talked to people I don't even know just to spread the word; complete strangers just to keep their eyes peeled."
Hundreds of people joined hands Thursday night on the Three Rivers High School football field, where Drayton once shined, to pray for his safe return.
"I feel as though praying in one and two is great, but when you're praying with all of those people, God's definitely going to hear it a lot faster and a lot louder," said Kristen Kellogg, who organized the prayer circle for Drayton. "We're hoping to be a megaphone tonight."
The 1999 hunter-green Ford Windstar that Drayton was driving, which belongs to his mother, is also missing.
A seat from the van, along with various items believed to have been in the vehicle, was found Wednesday on the side of a road.
The minivan's passenger's side door handle is missing. The vehicle has a cracked windshield and an "I'm a West Point parent" bumper sticker.
Drayton's loved ones remain optimistic.
"It's not like there's blood or any kind of signs of struggle. So we're staying positive," said Irene Drayton. "Marco's alive somewhere. I feel like he'll be home soon."
"Hopefully Marco will be home by tomorrow," his mother told the crowd assembled at the prayer circle. "I'm going to say tonight, he'll be home."
On Saturday, the Michigan State Spartans will be taking on the Ohio State Buckeyes for the Big Ten College Football title. On Friday, fans began gathering in Indianapolis for the big game.
Two Kalamazoo men are in jail after Kalamazoo officers found them with money stolen from Sunny Mart Friday afternoon.
Two people were taken to the hospital after one vehicle crossed the center line, causing a head-on crash in Ada Township Friday night.