Alert: Help Find Professor Cooks' Grandchildren

Monday, September 7, 2015

From Jonathan Cohen, Ph.D., Dean, Cincinnati:

Dear friends and colleagues,

I am sorry to interrupt the final hours of this Labor Day week-end with this announcement that I just received, and ask that you please read this message carefully:

Two grandchildren of our Faculty colleague, Prof. Michael Cook, have disappeared.  Sage Cook (14) and Isaac Cook (9) flew from Seattle to LAX on Friday, August 28th, on Alaska Airlines, for a scheduled weekend visit with their Taiwanese-American mother Faye Ku (their father in Seattle, David Cook, has full custody and the boys' passports).

The mother has left written admission that she has taken the children, and abandoned all credit cards, bank checks, car, cell-phones. and the like.  She herself apparently forged the required documentation for visitation-oversight.  Sage and Isaac were last seen with their mother and her (own) two-year old son at LAX on that Friday (Aug. 28) around noon. The boys were due to fly back from LA to Seattle on Sunday Aug. 30th at 6:30 pm but never boarded the plane.

All attempts to contact the boys or their mother have failed. It is unknown whether they are still in California or have traveled out of state or out of the country.

A similar incident was attempted several years ago but was foiled at a JFK boarding to Taiwan. Remedial protective measures seemed fool-proof but were somehow circumvented. 

All are concerned for the boys' safety and would appreciate any information. David and his wife Helen Cook are currently working with the FBI as well as police detectives in Bellevue WA and Lakewood CA.

Please call 911 or email if you see or hear anything.

Our thoughts, prayers, and wishes for a speedy resolution of this painful incident now turn to Sage and Isaac, to David and Helen, to our colleagues, friends, and teachers Professor Michael Cook and Rabbi Judy Chessin, and to all members of their family.

Founded in 1875, Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion is North America's leading institution of higher Jewish education and the academic, spiritual, and professional leadership development center of Reform Judaism. HUC-JIR educates men and women for service to North American and world Jewry as rabbis, cantors, educators, and nonprofit management professionals, and offers graduate programs to scholars and clergy of all faiths. With centers of learning in Cincinnati, Jerusalem, Los Angeles, and New York, HUC-JIR's scholarly resources comprise the renowned Klau Library, The Jacob Rader Marcus Center of the American Jewish Archives, research institutes and centers, and academic publications. In partnership with the Union for Reform Judaism and the Central Conference of American Rabbis, HUC-JIR sustains the Reform Movement's congregations and professional and lay leaders. HUC-JIR's campuses invite the community to cultural and educational programs illuminating Jewish heritage and fostering interfaith and multiethnic understanding.