Available May 31, 2010
Bringing Jon Home: The Wilderness Search for Jon Francis, is my first hand account of the long and complex wilderness search for our son, Jon, and the story of Jon’s remarkable life, sudden disappearance, and inspiring legacy. On Saturday morning, July 15, 2006, Jon Francis, climbed to the summit of the Grand Mogul, in the Sawtooth Mountain Range of Central Idaho. He never returned. Law enforcement searched for only 29 hours. After the evening search team briefing, on July 17, 2006, the Incident Commander, approached me and said; “David, you need to give your son up to the mountain.” Feeling helpless and abandoned the Francis family gathered that evening and committed to continue the search. We knew very little about mountain climbing or search and rescue, but we would learn and utilize the hundreds of volunteers who were streaming into Idaho to find Jon. While I relentlessly pursued the search for my son, I also made wonderful discoveries about him. Jon Francis was a remarkable young man. He touched and inspired others. He loved deeply and was deeply loved. I wrote Bringing Jon Hometo help others, to expose the gap in public sector resources dedicated to finding missing adults, and finally to let people know that an uncommon young man, named Jon Francis, once lived and loved among us.
About the Author
David Francis is president of the Jon Francis Foundation (JFF), a non-profit organization with the mission to provide support and empowerment to the families of people missing in the wilderness. The Foundation was created as a tribute to David’s 24-year-old son, Jon, who went missing in July 2006 while climbing the Grand Mogul in the Sawtooth Mountains of Central Idaho. Authorities had abandoned their search for the young man after just three days, but David and his family refused to give up. They mobilized hundreds of volunteers who spent more than a year searching the wilderness.
David Francis is a retired Minnesota businessman, former nuclear submarine officer and retired U.S. Navy Captain with 30 years of naval service. His business experience includes several years with 3M and IBM and sales, marketing and management at five high technology startup companies in Minnesota. David and his wife, Linda, live in Stillwater, Minn. They have been married for more than 40 years and have one son, Jon; three daughters, Robin, Jocelyn and Melissa; and six grandchildren, Taylor, Katie, Stephen, Audrey, Charlie and Camille.