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Facebook Friends Fight to Save US Student Who Vanished In Jungle

Photo: David Gimelfarb, Chicago Student missing since Aug 11

COSTA RICA (CBS/AP) David Gimelfarb, 28, a doctoral student in psychology in Chicago, set out Aug. 11 for a solo hike through the mountainous Rincon de la Vieja national park in Costa Rica - and has not been heard from since. Now, his best hope of being seen alive again has come from an unlikely source… Facebook.

CBS' Chicago affiliate WBBM reports that just hours after Gimelfarb's parents, Luda and Roma Gimelfarb, landed in Costa Rica on Aug. 13 to begin searching for their son, friends of the Chicago PhD candidate had set up a Facebook page to offer updates on the search and to encourage friends and family to donate to a search fund and to write to their representatives to push for more US support in the search.

And it's working.

Last week two US military Black Hawk helicopter with infrared technology were sent to scan the densely-forested region where Gimelfarb was last seen. Red Cross officials said that Gimelfarb signed a guestbook at the park on Aug. 11 and that park officials began searching for him after his car was the last one left in the parking lot at the end of the day.

(AP Photo/Kent Gilbert)
Photo: Costa Rican Red Cross search for David Gimelfarb in the Rincon de la Vieja National Park, Monday, Aug. 24, 2009.

Luda Gimelfarb, the missing student's mother, told CBS that she became worried for David after she didn't receive his daily email letting her know he was okay, and that now she is at a loss as to what has become of her son, "I am absolutely terrified. I don't know what's happened to him," she said.

If you want to help find David Gimelfarb visit his Facebook page.

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