ROGERSVILLE (WATE) - The reward for information leading to the safe return of Rogersville 9-year-old Carlie Trent, the subject of an Amber Alert, continues to grow, reaching at least $41,000 on Thursday, just over one week since she went missing.
The 9-year-old was removed from school Wednesday by her uncle by marriage, Gary Simpson, 57, under false pretenses, according to Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI). Police say Gary Simpson told school officials Trent's father was in a car accident and she may not be in school on Thursday as well. They said Gary Simpson has no custodial rights to Carlie Trent and their whereabouts are unknown.
They were last seen in a white 2002 Dodge Conversion van with license plate 173-GPS. Anyone who sees this van or either Carlie or her uncle should call 911.Related story: TBI flooded with tips in search for Carlie Trent, still no confirmed sightings
The reward initially began with $2,500 offered by the U.S. Marshal's Service. That was followed by $10,000 from Carlie's pediatrician Dr. Chris Calendine. He previously planned to use the money to save for a boat, but indicated he would rather see the money used to further the effort to bring Carlie home.
The U.S. Marshal's Service then announced Monday they would increase their reward to $5,000. Matt Daniels and Tim Williams, two Knoxville banking executives, are offering $10,000 for information leading to Carlie Trent's safe return. The Apex Bank executives said they felt compelled to get involved.
Seven days is just too long for Daniels, the president and CEO of Apex Bank.
"And I just said what can I do?" said Daniels.
With Carlie Trent still missing he could only imagine if she was his own.
"It really started wearing on me because I have two daughters ages 10 and 6, I couldn't imagine being under this scenario for a few hours, let alone seven days," he said. "We just want to see her return safely," said Daniels.
With the coverage on the news and alerts reminding him while he drives on the highway Daniels wants to do what he can to help find Carlie.
"This is an agonizing story," said Daniels.
Jim Clayton with Clayton Bank and Trust says his bank is adding $10,000 to the reward to for information leading to Carlie Trent's safe return, bringing the total to $35,000. Clayton says he has grandchildren around the same age as Carlie and felt compelled to help.
A Nashville musician wants to add to the reward as well. Trey Healy, a dog groomer by day and a musician by night, wants to add $5,000, but so far his pledge is not included in official counts.
Calendine says if anyone is interested in contributing to the reward, please call 423-272-7555 or email BringCarlieHome@gmail.com.