(Next Steps & Updates)
Norton Search Update 11/23/13:
Good news, we were successful in getting the camera pod safely to the Venezuelan Civil Protection. We are one step closer to being able to return to continue the search.
October 2013 Update:
February 16 ... it's been four years since Bob and Neiba Norton disappeared in the jungles of Venezuela along with 5 passengers - Gladys, Flora, Yuli, Paulina and Eddie. Bob was one of my best friends. I still miss him. I can not thank everyone enough for providing their time, products, services, tallents and financial support for the ongoing search effort.. we could not have done it nor could we continue the effort without you. We are planning our next trip down in the near future to conduct high resolution aerial photography of the next priority search zone. Our core team continues to work closely with the Venezuelan Civil Protection agency. Our commitment is strong to continue so that we can provide answers and closure for all the family members and friends of those lost . . . and so we press ahead . . .
Chattanooga CH9interview with Bob Edwards Aug 2012
Search Summit III
Plan: Evaluate all the information we brought back from Ven Trip III earlier this year. Populate the GIS computer, base map, with all known data related to the search. Re-construct containment analysis and develop new priority zones for next trip to Venezuela.
Norton Search Updated (Posted 3/7/12)
Click HERE to view pics on this website from Venezuela Trip III. Or go to Media page and click on Pictures Ven Trip III.
Norton Search Update (Posted 3/4/12)
Norton Search Update (Posted 3/1/12)
Click HERE to view Facebook pictures from the recent trip to Venezuela.
Norton Search Update (Posted 2/26/12)
Back home now. Great investigative and planning trip to Venezuela. We believe we have greatly reduced the search zone based on the information we brought back. We will be posting a report later this week.
Norton Search Update (Posted 2/23/12 in the evening)
Very successful day today.. after talking with officials, it looks like it may be possible to use some of the technology we have been pulling together for the Norton search.. we are very pleased.. and most all of the information from witnesses is leading us towards a "return to Maurak / St. Elena" scenario.. this greatly reduces the possible search zone size... we are meeting at US Embassy tomorrow...
Norton Search Update (Posted 2/23/12)
After an 8 hour drive on a road through the mountains of the Gran Sabana, Tim and I are now in Cd Bolivar . We will be talking with Bob Norton's mechanic today to see what kind of problems Bob had with the plane in the past. It may shed some light on what may have happened. We will also be meeting with some officials today about our Search Plane we are designing to see if it may be possible to bring it down to help search the priority zones.
Venezuela Trip III (Posted 2/18/12)
Tim Evinger and Bob Edwards are in Venezuela this week to continue the fact finding and physical search. They will be traveling through the country from Puerto Ordaz to Maurak to Ciudad Bolivar to interview eyewitnesses and gather missing pieces of data needed for the search plan. They will also be conducting some arial flights over one of the priority zones to get a look at an area where an eyewitness believes he saw the plane fly over on Feb 16, 2009.
Senate Resolution (Posted 2/12/12)
Here is a scanned copy of the Georgia Senate Resolution for The Norton Search Team.
Benefit Dinner @ Riegeldale Tavern 2/4/12 (Posted 2/05/12)
On Saturday, February 4, 2012, The Norton Search Team hosted at Benefit Dinner at the Riegeldale Tavern in Trion Georgia. The goal was to raise $2500 to help with expenses of the ongoing search effort. The actual amount raised was $4119!!! This will enable two team members to return to Venezuela in February to continue the investigation / interviewing process in the search effort. They also hope to speak with official about the plan to bring the Search UAV (ASP2) down at a later date if permits and oversite can be approved. This will also provide funds to continue to build the Search UAV and also for the completion of The Norton Search Team's 501-C3 application. Click on the link below for a video review of the Benefit Dinner.
Article from Nooga.com (Posted 1/22/12)
Click here for link to recent article in Noog.com
Plans for Benefit Dinner (Posted 1/6/12)
The Team and Special Thanks page updates on this website (Posted 1/1/12)
Thankyou Letter From Alabama Senator McGill to Dr. Garcia and the Civil Protection
Twitter Update(Posted 12/20/11)
You can now follow us on Twitter for regular updates at:
or click on this link:
Search UAV Update (Posted 11/24/11) New pics of Search UAV (ASP-2)
Our jungle rugged search UAV we refer to as ASP-2 (Aerial Search Platform) is now under construction. We are excited to see this come together. Tennessee Tech is helping by designing the launch and recovery systems, Steve and Sam are constructing the actual plane from the basic RC plane as built by Neal Zook. Edan Cain is developing the flight computers and flight software. While all this is going on, the investigation team continues to evaluate data and plan the next trip to Venezuela. We ...have posted update pictures on the ASP page of this website and as the physical build of ASP-2 happens we will continue to post pics. We are looking for an actual name for this plane, so if you have any suggestions, send them our way! Attached is the picture of our new engine for ASP-2. It's a 53cc twin, 2-cycle and produces 5.5 hp. It should be strong enough to pull the plane through the windy conditions we will most certainly encounter.
Trip III Update (Posted 10/28/11)
We continue with our fundraiser in preparation to return to Venezuela and to support our design and build for the Aerial Search Platform (RC Plane with Cameras). Click here to see the fundraising activity and the account information.
Venezuela TRIP III Plans (Posted 10/9/11)
(Fundraiser is underway, click here to donate online)
As you know, we have been working on the search for Bob and Neiba Norton and
their passengers, Gladys Zerpa, Flora Mujica and her daughter Juli and Paulina Neri and her infant son Eddi for more than 2 ½ years now. Our team of volunteers have collectively spent thousands of hours on the physical search, the investigative analysis and the development of search technologies that we hope will help us find the crash site in the Venezuelan jungles.
Furthermore, the technologies and systems being developed for this search could also be invaluable in aiding future searches. Several of our team members are involved in search and rescue agencies beyond the Norton search and are interested in it's success not only for it's own sake but for the future potential success it makes possible.
In addition, several engineering students from Tennessee Technological University
are also involved with the design of our Aerial Camera Platforms (ASP-1 and
ASP-2) which are capable of scanning the jungle canopy for signs of the crash site.
The critical next step for our team requires an investigator/pilot with
specialized skills for locating missing aircraft to travel to Venezuela. The objective of this investigator will be to research new and old leads and to fly possible routes Norton may have flown on Feb 16, 2009. The possible routes have already been determined by our team's flight simulations, based partly on information from witnesses who came
forward only after the original, intense, air search. This trip will also prepare
the way to bring our ASP-2 down after the first of the 2012 calendar year to
conduct detailed searches of the jungle canopy in our priority zones.
While on this upcoming investigative trip to Venezuela, one of our
team members will be presenting the technologies we are developing to the
annual International Technical Rescue Symposium (ITRS) in Colorado. The ITRS will serve as another opportunity to spread the word about this search effort and the
technologies being developed.
In preparation for the upcoming trip, our team members are in frequent communication with those Venezuelan members who have partnered with us and are coordinating our itinerary for us.
Most of our equipment has been donated, loaned or purchased at a
reduced rate, which has kept our overal operating expenses at a minimum. In the near future, however, we do need help with travel expenses. Many of us on the team offer whatever financial amounts we can to continue the search effort's forward motion. We initiated a fund raiser approximately one month ago and our account now holds just over $2000.
Several thousand more is needed to cover our travel expenses without accruing debt.
If you would like to contribute to this worthwhile cause, any amount will be sincerely appreciated. We are completely a grass-roots organization and we operate solely on donations, so we need every individual willing to offer their financial assistance. Even quantities of ten or twenty dollars will help if enough people will participate. Please donate
(tax deductible donation) through Outpost Centers International, a non-profit agency
who has graciously handled all of our donations since the search began.
You can donate online at:
It is VERY important to mark your donations for “Norton Search Effort.”
Or you can mail your donation to:
Outpost Centers International
5340 Layton Lane
Apison, TN 37302 (Remember to mark for "Norton Search Effort")
Thanks once again to all who have helped with this effort and continue
to do so. Feel free to call me personnally for additional details if you would like and
you can follow us on our web site at: www.findingbobnorton.org.
As we press ahead . . .
Merry at Yosemite as she carefully deciphers Norton's log book. This information will be used to help us determine Bob's flight patterns.
Norton Search Update (Posted 7/30/11)
Back in June, some of the team members attended the National Association for Search & Rescue (NASAR) annual conference in Sparks, NV. We presented the Norton Search effort there. Additional assistance came in the form of Tim Evinger, an experienced investigator joining the effort. Following the NASAR presentation we traveled to Yosemite in California to meet with John Dill and some of his team to conduct our 2nd Search Summit. We worked on the development of our search plan and determined our next steps. Pictures are posted on our website of the events. We continue our work and hold bi-weekly Skype calls to coordinate the work being done.
Currently we are working with two drone designs. One of them is primarily for use as a development platform for sensors, cameras and radar to be tested on. The other is planned for taking to Venezuela to fly and scan over the jungle.
We are planning to return with a small team to Venezuela in October to video interview all the key eyewitnesses and to fly simulations of possible routes Bob Norton may have flown. We will be taking high resolution images of the jungle canopy as we fly these routes looking for possible clues to where the plane may have gone down. All the information being gathered is going into a computer based search model.
We now have established our search effort as a non-profit organization named “The Norton Search Team, Inc.” Donations may be made directly to our organization or through OCI as in the past. We continue to need financial assistance in order to travel back down to Venezuela to conduct interviews and search and for the development of the search drone and associated technologies. Thanks to all who have supported in the past and to those who continue to support this effort.