By MARK O'BRIEN
SCHENECTADY, N.Y. -- Veronica Frear takes her first look at a brand new billboard aimed at finding her son Craig.
Frear says it's given her family a shot of hope again.
"I can't tell you how much I appreciate everything they did, really," Frear says. "You need that (hope). Without that, you just want to crawl up and die, you do."
Craig disappeared at the age of 17 on June 27, 2004, walking home from a friend's apartment in Scotia. Now more than five years later, his family says it's important to keep Craig's name and face in the public eye.
"[I'm] just hoping that it's a reminder to people, and maybe somebody will have some information," Frear says.
The people behind the effort are HVCC law professor Cathy Lindberg and her students. Lindberg, herself, has had her own child taken, and she says she and her class just wanted to do what they could to help.
"There's a family that's heartbroken," she says. "I find it very disheartening if, as a community, we don't come forth and bring this boy home."
The billboard company, Lamar, donated the space for Craig's picture on two billboards: one is in Troy along Rt. 378 and Stow Ave., the other one is in Schenectady at I-890 and Broadway, just a few miles from where Craig was last seen. Lamar estimates 32,686 vehicles drive by both locations every day. They're scheduled to stay up for at least the next month, maybe longer.
"It may trigger somebody's mind or memory," says Bill Frear, Craig's father. "You got to keep the hope alive."
While it might not be a new lead, per se, it is a sign the Frears hope will bring about new clues on just where their son might be.
"I'll come home and he'll be there, that's what I'm hoping for," his mother says.
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