Cookes Invited To White House Conference

Discussion in 'The Search for Rachel Cooke' started by JR, Sep 21, 2002.

  1. JR

    JR FFJ Senior Member

    For Immediate Release September 19, 2002


    Robert and Janet Cooke of Georgetown, whose daughter, Rachel Cooke, has been missing since January 10, have been invited to participate in the first-ever White House Conference on Missing, Exploited, and Runaway Children. The conference will take place on October 2, 2002, at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center in Washington, D.C.
  2. RC

    RC FFJ Senior Member

    KEYE interview on 09/26/02

    Janet and I will be on the 10:eek:o p.m. KEYE news tonight. They interviewed us at home yesterday afternoon.
  3. JR

    JR FFJ Senior Member


    The KEye presentation on Rachel's story was excellent! They did a fantastic job of mixing the White House invitation with old footage and great use of <b>Rachel's Song!</b> I timed it and Rachel got over 3 minutes of air time for a change.

    I also watched the new show <b>Without A Trace.</b> I am glad to see they put a flyer up right at the end of the show. Maybe you can get Rachel's flyer on a future show.
  4. JR

    JR FFJ Senior Member

    Williamson County Sun - 10/02/02

  5. JR

    JR FFJ Senior Member

    Cookes join Bush for Amber Alert


    KVUE News

    The president today invited to Washington hundreds of those touched by child abductions, saying he'd take action immediately.

    Janet and Robert Cooke endorse the idea, even though their 19-year-old daughter Rachel was actually too old to be included in an alert. The girl was taken in January while she was jogging in Georgetown:

    "There were a lot of good ideas, a lot of good thoughts coming through as far as what we can do in the future. It's gonna take a lot to implement some of them, but it's in the right direction," says Janet Cooke, Rachel's mother.

    NOTE: There is a video clip at the link above.
  6. RC

    RC FFJ Senior Member

    Conference Report

    Yesterday was a great day! President Bush knows who Rachel Cooke is! He hugged Janet and shook my hand.

    The conference was opened by U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft. He set the bar immediately, It doesn't matter how many children are taken from their family, because one child is too many.

    After Mr. Ashcroft, several panels spoke about the various issues of the missing exploited, and runaway children in our nation and the rest of the world. The first panel was named RISKS TO AMERICA'S CHILDREN AND YOUTH. The panel was lead by Ernie Allen, the President and CEO of The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.

    The most notable speakers on this panel were Don and Claudine Ryce, the parent s of murdered 9-year-old Jimmy Ryce. Mr. Ryce made the same statement that I have used before. He said that the abductors were domestic terrorist. Mrs. Ryce told how their foundation donates bloodhound dogs to law enforcement agencies in the United States. Bloodhounds can follow the victims scent even if their were taken in a car. Mrs. Ryce also described what Jimmy's abductor did to him. I can't repeat it here. It is too horrifying.
  7. Shyshi5

    Shyshi5 Member


    I'm glad to see that you had the chance to talk with John Walsh. The Nation will all know who Rachel is. YEAH!!!!!
    I watched multiple channels and kept an eye out for you, unfortunately I didn't watch KVUE tv...shame on me. I was watching all of the other major networks.

    have fun visiting Washington D.C. stay safe and hurry home!!!!!!
  8. JR

    JR FFJ Senior Member

  9. RC

    RC FFJ Senior Member

    Late morning panels and the President

    The second panel of speakers was hosted by Bob Flores, an administrator in the US Department of Justice, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. The panel was named WHAT WORKS-SUCCESSFUL PROGRAMS. Texas State Senator Florence Shapiro spoke about the State of Texas Alert implementation. Rick Minicucci from the NCMEC showed a demonstration of the age progression software that the NCMEC has. Lieutenant Bill Walsh from the Dallas Police Department explained their office's S.O.A.P. system for tracking paroled sexual offenders. The program enforces zero tolerance when a paroled sexual offender violates his or her parole. I want the system put in place in every county in Texas.

    The third panel named THE FEDERAL ROLE was hosted by FBI director Robert S. Mueller III, Lee Heath, the Chief Postal Inspector reported on the huge "candyman" child pornography organization that was just broken up. Chief Proceeding Fulton County, Georgia Judge Nina R. Hickerson explained how bad that forced child prostitution is and what needs to be done to prevent it.

    President George W. Bush and First Lady Laura Bush then took the stage. Laura Bush introduced her husband. President Bush reiterated what John Ashcroft said. One missing or abduction child is too many.

    Mr. Bush then went on the praise various public and private
    organizations that are helping with the fight against abductions,
    exploitation, and runaways. After the President spoke, he walked
    around the edge of the crowd for almost an hour shaking hands. Janet gave her hand to him and he pulled her to him and hugged her. He said "You're Rachel's mom" The President knows about Rachel Cooke! I also shook the Presidents hand after that.
  10. JR

    JR FFJ Senior Member

    RC and Dubya

    RC, maybe the National media will look at the fact that Rachel comes from Dubya's home territory as a "new media angle" and finally do a story on Rachel.

    We can hope anyway.

    Sounds like it was a really informative conference.

    Let's see the follow through now!
  11. RC

    RC FFJ Senior Member

    The afternoon

    Just before lunch I met Texas Senator Florence Shapiro who spoke on the second panel. The DALLAS MORNING NEWS INTERVIEWED me after that and then ABC news interviewed Janet and me together.

    As lunch was winding down, the fourth panel named INTERNATIONAL ABDUCTIONS AND TRAFFICING took the stage. This panel was hosted by Undersecretary of State for Global Affairs Paula Debriansky.
    The most notable of the speakers on this panel was Gary Haugen,
    President and CEO of International Justice Mission. Mr. Haugen told
    how children were abducted from one country and then taken to
    another country to work as a sex slave.

    Another speaker on this panel was Thomas R. Sylvester. Mr.
    Sylvester's son was kidnapped by his Austrian non-custodial mother
    and taken to Austria. The Austrian Government is supporting the
    mother and won't allow the children to be returned to the U.S.A.
    This was very interesting because a father sitting at my table had
    almost the same story. His German wife kidnapped his son and
    daughter two years ago and the German Government is protecting
    the mother's right to keep the children. Both Sylvester and the
    father at my table has involved the U.S. government in their
    quest to bring their children home.

    The next panel was hosted by Secretary of Health and Human Services
    notable speaker on this panel was Sister Mary Rose McGeady, the
    President of the Covenant House in New York City. The Covenant
    House reaches out and helps runaway children. They feed them, cloth
    them, rest them, and counsel them. I was impressed when Sister
    Mary Rose said they work with the children to develop a plan for
    the child. The child is involved in the whole process.

    During the break I met Erin Runnion, the mother of murdered 5-year-old Samantha Runnion. It was a very emotional experience. We both cried.

    Secretary of Education Roderick Paige hosted the PREVENTING THE VICTIMIZATION OF CHILDREN panel. This panel did not really cover any new topics.

    NBC news then interviewed me. As I was finishing the interview,
    Janet came by and they interviewed her.

    THE ROLE OF MEDIA AND CORPORATIONS panel was hosted by John Walsh, from AMERICA'S MOST WANTED. John Murphy, Vice President of Loss Prevention at Walmart explained the Adam Alert that all Walmart and Sams stores have implemented. All employees are trained on the program before they start to work. When a store receives a missing child report from a customer, the store is locked down while customers and employees search for the child. If the child is not found in 10 minutes, law enforcement is notified.

    Another good speaker on this panel was Parry Aftab, the Executive Director of WiredSafety,com Ms. Aftab is developing Internet Safety tips for parents. She believes that the wrong thing to do is to prevent the child from using the Internet. I agree with Ms. Aftab.

    Secretary of State Colin Powell closed the conference. He is a
    very powerful speaker and not at all what I think an Army general
    is usually like. He had several of us close to tears with his
    speech. I can see that man running for President some day and winning!

    After the conference Janet and I grabbed John Walsh as his was
    leaving. Mr. Walsh sounded positive bout featuring Rachel on
    his new television show JAnet and I will keep our fingers crossed.
  12. LurkerXIV

    LurkerXIV Moderator

    RC, Excellent report.

    It sounds like they covered all the bases. Very good conference. Now comes the implementation, in which I hope all child advocates and ordinary citizens can help. We CAN make this country safe again for our young people. We MUST!
  13. JR

    JR FFJ Senior Member


    I am excited to hear that ABC and NBC News interviewd you and Janet. I will keep my fingers crossed that Rachel's story starts getting more National media.

    I do hope John Walsh follows through on his promise this time.

    The conference sounds just amazing.
  14. KB

    KB FFJ Senior Member

    RC and Janet

    Thank you for being such an impressive voice, not only in Rachel's case but also in the case of all missing persons.

    You have touched the lives of many and you HAVE already made a difference. I see that difference in my self and in others around you.

    I hope and pray your journey to Washington will help you with Rachels case and will also help other missing persons all over the world.

    You two and the rest of your family are a remarkable force. Journey on and stay strong, you have all of us supporting you and walking with you.
  15. RC

    RC FFJ Senior Member


    KB, I am happy to tell you that the RACHEL'S SONG CD covers (with a CD) that you made were given to President Bush, Erin Runnion, and one of the board members of the NCMEC.
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2002
  16. RC

    RC FFJ Senior Member

  17. RC

    RC FFJ Senior Member

  18. JR

    JR FFJ Senior Member

    Williamson County Sun 10/06/02

  19. RC

    RC FFJ Senior Member


    I don't know where she go Arby's from. I was talking to her
    from The National Gallery of Art. The article is good though.
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2002
  20. JR

    JR FFJ Senior Member


    It is a good article. It's also nice to see back-to-back articles in the local paper.

    Arbys eh? Now we know.
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