The parents of a 7-year-old Portland boy who disappeared from his school three weeks ago voiced what sounded like fading hope Friday that one of the most intense investigations in Oregon history will find him alive.
Kaine Horman and his former wife, Desiree Young, were interviewed by national TV morning shows and by local affiliates. It was the first interviews the birth parents of Kyron Horman have granted.
"Honestly, I'm a little scared at this point," Young said. "Three weeks is a long time. We need to bring him home."
The TV stations also showed video of Kyron provided by his family that included footage of him at school reading a report on bridges and singing with classmates.
"It's important to keep Kyron's face out there, so that everybody sees him," Young said, expressing hope for a tip that brings him home.
The TV appearances didn't yield any information about whether police are making any progress in the case — the couple said they had been told not to discuss details of the investigation.
During the early days of the search, police called Kyron a "missing endangered child." After failing to find the boy during intense searches in woods and fields around the school, the search was reclassified as a criminal investigation.
Young, at times tearful, described Kyron as a timid boy who doesn't like going without his glasses because he doesn't see well.
"He always stays very close to his house in the front because he's afraid of not being able to find his house," she said.
Last week, police distributed fliers showing photos of the boy's stepmother, Terri Moulton Horman, and asking the public for any information about her movements on the day the boy disappeared. A friend of Terri Horman has said the stepmother has taken a polygraph test twice.
She and Kaine Horman live in a house about two miles from Kyron's school, located in the hilly countryside west of downtown Portland. Desiree Young lives in Medford, about six hours from Portland.
Police say Terri Horman was the last person known to have seen Kyron. She told police she took him to school on the morning of June 4. The school was having a science fair before classes began. She took a photo of Kyron at the school with his own project.
During the Friday interviews, Kaine Horman said he and Terri Horman had gone to the school bus stop together to pick up Kyron on the afternoon of June 4. When the bus driver told them Kyron wasn't on the bus, he thought the boy may have stayed at the school and expected them to pick him up there. Police were alerted after the discovery that Kyron had been absent from class.
Police are not calling Terri Horman a suspect. They have said they distributed the fliers bearing her photo in the hopes of "jogging" people's memories.
Kaine Horman and Young wouldn't discuss law officials' interest in the stepmother. Kaine Horman said his wife is "as committed as the rest of the family to finding Kyron" and she is cooperating with investigators.
Kaine Horman said the last time he saw his son was before his wife took Kyron to school that morning. The boy was in the yard feeding the cat.
Harmon said he gave the boy a hug and told him to "have a great day with his science project," on the red-eyed tree frog, and that "I was proud of him for all the effort" he put into it.
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