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Search for teen lost in tornado grows desperate

The search for the missing continues in Joplin, Mo. One of them is 16-year-old Lantz Hare, who was out driving with a friend when the tornado hit on Sunday. He hasn't been seen since.

His mother, Michelle Hare, said on "The Early Show" Wednesday efforts to find her son are prompting growing very frustrating, particularly over the difficulty in verifying information.

Pictures: Joplin Decimation from the groundPictures: Destruction in Joplin

She said, "We, of course, since we started to do interviews and such, we were getting all kinds of leads. However, unfortunately, nothing has panned out. I mean, it's very, very frustrating. Although that's what we need in this case, it's so frustrating to, not only get a lead, but then call a hospital or something, knowing that they have unidentified, and they'll tell you, 'We don't.' We have confirmed reports in some of the Springfield hospitals that we know there are unidentified, yet you call them this morning and they're still saying, 'We don't have any."'

Co-anchor Chris Wragge said, "I've talked to some people and they say there are John and Jane Does at a number of hospitals, but some of the injuries are so severe they can't necessarily be identified."

Said Hare, "But I guess the point is at least they could let you know there's a possibility."

The friend Lantz was with, Johnathan Taylor, is in a Springfield, Mo., hospital, Wragge reported.

Michelle Hare said Johnathan doesn't know what happened to Lantz.

"He lives with us and all he said was, 'Mama, can I come home?' I said, 'No, you can't, where is Lantz?' All he could do was shake his head and say, 'I got here in a van. I got here in a van."'

Lantz's mother said she learned from Johnathan that the boys had pulled into a Dillons grocery store.

Hare said, "I assume (they did that) to wait it out because, apparently, my son was on the phone with a friend at the time, at the exact time."

The grocery store was leveled.

"The friend says that the front window blew," Hare said. "He jumped in the back seat, the back window blew and that's his last recollection."

The search is ongoing - but is growing desperate.

"We dug and dug and dug, but I think, at this point, it might be best for the professionals to go and do that," Hare said. "It seemed like they weren't, and so we felt we had to. I know some will still be out there today. They've implied that they will, and that's great. I don't think it's going to be in my best interest is to go back out there today, that maybe we should be following leads, driving to hospitals, if we get anything."

She added, "You know, I have strangers that are driving to hospitals so we don't have to, to try to eliminate things that we don't. I want to thank those people, obviously, hospital associations in Oklahoma and Texas, they're doing work for us."

Wragge said, "We're sorry about the current situation and hope there's a miracle out there for you and will say a prayer for you."

If you have information, go to Find Lantz Hare on Facebook or call (417) 396-6523 or (918) 497-8498. Lantz is 16 years old, six feet tall and weighs 190 pounds. He has sandy brown hair that is long in the front and hangs over his eyes. Lantz's family notes he may have facial lacerations and some sort of head trauma.

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