Find Ian Burnet


NEW YORK CITY, January 8, 2012 – Ian Hunter Burnet disappeared on December 30th leaving behind a devastated family fearing the worst. Ian’s disappearance has sparked an outpouring of support that has resulted in a FaceBook page nearing 1,400 members after only two days. Hundreds of volunteers have spent the past few days posting flyers across New York City and New County, Va.

Ian Burnet is Missing

Ian Burnet is Missing

Ian Burnet, 22, left his Richmond, Va. residence on December 26, 2011 to travel to New York City to stay with friends. Ian was last seen at the apartment where he had been staying located in the area of 139th Street and Riverside Drive. Ian’s last contact with his parents was by text on December 28th. Ian’s last known contact was by text with his roommate on December 30th shortly before his disappearance at approximately 4 p.m.

Ian comes from a warm and loving home and has no history of problems with drugs or alcohol. They only want to know that he is safe and pray he returns to his family soon.

Ian is an engineering student on full scholarship at Virginia Commonweath University. He is well known for his wit, warmth, and intelligence. If you ask his mother what his biggest attribute is, she would say he gives the most incredible hugs.

Ian is a white male, 5’8”, 131 lbs., with green eyes and curly dark brown hair.

If you make contact with him or have any information about his whereabouts please contact the

New York Police Department, 30th Precinct (451 W 151st St.) 212-690-8842

  • Det. Sanchez or
  • Det. Davis, or
  • Sgt. Greene

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  29 Responses to “Find Ian Burnet”

  1. You’re welcome, Donna. Here’s the link:

    On Tue, Jan 10, 2012 at 1:46 PM, Donna Simmons wrote:
    Thank You very much. I am trying in whatever way I can to get the word out of Ian’s disappearance in hopes that someone saw something or knows something that may help to find him. Again, Thank You!!!!

    From: Christopher Robbins []
    Sent: Tuesday, January 10, 2012 1:43 PM
    To: Donna Simmons
    Subject: Re: Help Find Ian Burnet

    Thanks for your email Donna, we’re actually working on a story now. I’ll send you a link when it’s posted.

    On Tue, Jan 10, 2012 at 1:38 PM, Donna Simmons wrote:
    • I am e-mailing you in hopes of support with a tragic event. A young man, Ian Burnet, from Richmond, VA, has gone missing in New York City, New York. The last anyone heard from him was on December 30, 2011. Ian’s family and friends are praying for his safe return as well as marshaling all available resources to help locate him and bring him home, but no one can do this alone.

    Ian is an Eagle Scout as well as valedictorian of the New Kent High School graduating class of 2008. There is a group on Facebook dedicated to his safe return called ‘FIND IAN BURNET,’ which has well over 1,600 members, as well as a Twitter group with 55 followers (@FindIanBurnet). I am sure every last one of those people would be eternally grateful to you for your support with this. is available with more detailed information.

    Thank you in advance for any support or assistance you can provide in helping to locate Ian Burnet.

  2. Mark and Nancy,

    Our prayers are with you and your family. We lift Ian up to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. We pray he will be protected and return home safely.


    Sammy and Corinthia Fudge

  3. I have a son who is 22 years old and this would literally be my worst nightmare and my heart truly goes out to you. My son sometimes goes a day or maybe even two without calling me (he lives with me) and sometimes he will not answer my calls. But – he has never left his cell phone behind. That is the weird thing to me. He might not answer, but he would never leave it. Neither would any of his friends. They might leave anything behind, but not their cell phone. I hope those four guys he roomed are being questioned! I do not know who they were, but I would be very suspicious of those guys or anyone connected with those guys!!! I read about it in the Virginia Gazette.

  4. I just want to tell Ian’s family my family and I will continue to pray for Ian and his family. May God be with you in these times and always.

  5. When I read his name I was shocked… and wondered if some time in history how our families were related. Then I thought of my own sons…wow! My prayers are with you and yours!

  6. If you need any help searching please email me I will be glad to volunteer time

  7. We are a scouting family also. I’m praying for you and your family that your precious son is found.

  8. I live in NYC (Brooklyn). I have children roughly the same age as Ian and his brother. I will help in any way I can.

  9. FYI – Google Maps shows Riverside Dr – – – NOT Riverside Ave.

    Godspeed, Chip

  10. I read about Ian last night and could not sleep thinking about what his family is going through. I am the mom of two young adults..both are advid runners. NCAA. One is a VCU grad student and a DC area track coach. The other has moved on to grad school in NYC. I read that Ian left behind his cell. To me, as the mother of runners, it sounds to me as if Ian took a run. Runners unfortunately feel running with a phone “weighs them down” so they do without. As a parent this has upset me and when there has been an injury we are the last to know. My son now is an avid NYC runner. A few comments. He runs from Harlem to Central Park several times a week. He has promised us he doesn’t run into the northern end of the park as it is for thought. Also, I know from our high school competition days that Van Cortland is a park most runners tackle. Another park that has its dark and hilly challenges. This would be a long run but doable if he is a serious distance runner. My son lives near Morningside Park which closes at night…not a good runners park in the evening. Also hilly with rock. I feel desperate for this family as on many days I pray my children are safe doing what they love all the while thinking nothing can happen to them.

  11. We are some distance from NYC, but please know that your family is our in all our prayers. May God give you the strength and power to see you through this time. God Bless.

  12. Best wishes and loads of prayers for a positive outcome in this situation. My heart is aching for everyone involved – Ian, his family, and his friends. I hope Ian sees the out-pouring of love and reaches out. My thoughts are with you all.

  13. I live in California and therefore will not be of much help, but I am praying for you and your family as well as the safe return of your brother. May God keep him safe, and may you be reunited with him soon.

  14. Did he have access to any sort of vehicle?

  15. I live in Hoboken, NJ, which is on the Hudson, across from NYC. Please let me know what I can do to help. My heart aches for you. You’re in my prayers.

  16. I don’t know if my post might give you false hope but some many years ago a young college student from my neighborhood in Brooklyn went missing. The neighborhood did everything to find her and then, a week or so later, she appeared safe and sound. She had just needn’t a break from it all. Young adults in their early 20s don’t always understand what upset their actions might cause.

    I pray that your Ian is in the same boat as the young girl from my neighborhood who returned herself to her family.

    I pray that Ian will return safe and sound to his family.

  17. I will keep Ian and your family in my prayers! I am the mother of 4 children and it is hard to sleep some nights just because you don’t know where they are, what they are doing because we are mother’s it is in our nature to worry. I can not comprehend what you must be going through. I pray that Ian is home and you are receiving one of his amazing hugs again very very soon.

  18. TWO IDEAS:

    1) WAS there anyone he slightly knew (or knew) at Columbia U? He could have taken the subway right there a few stops up.

    2) DID you check the NYC jail? Was he possibly arrested on NYE in the OWS march after midnight? The NYPD were willy nilly arresting anyone. He could be in the jail under a wrong name since MOST people would misspell Burnet. It could be spelled Burnett, Burnette, Barnett, etc. Or he could possibly be a John Doe in a jail. If he is in jail, he has no idea you are looking for him.

    3) I sure do hope he is alive and well. Can’t imagine what you are going through.

  19. Prayers coming from Iowa hoping you find Ian safe and soon.

  20. Prayers from Delaware. This makes my stomach hurt. My son is 25, has been living and working there since the end of the summer. I will be telling him about this and he and his circle of friends can keep an eye out. I have visited the city many times and love it, the people are friendly and helpful, I’m sure they are doing all they can. God Bless you and your family.

  21. Mark, Nancy and Jamie,
    Our prayers go out for all of you, We wish we could do more to help.
    This has to be the worst thing you have had to endure.
    We hope that Ian shows up safe and sound.
    We miss all of our friends and adopted family in New Kent and need to get back out there soon.
    Please let us know if we can do anything to help, we have contacted everyone we know in New York and ask for their help but that doesn’t seem like enough!
    Feel free to contact us for any reason,

    • I am approving your msg for posting on the web site but, out of respect for your privacy, I have edited to remove your phone number.

      The Web Master

      • I understand, if you could pass the number on to Mark and Nancy that would be great, as we now live in West Virginia and Ian and our daughter used to be close friends ans I worked with Mark over the years.
        Thank you

  22. Ian and your family are in my thoughts. <3 <3 <3

  23. Please dont let this slow down! I have commented recently I agree foul play is not a valid explanation again because he would have been found by now. If he lived in NY it might make more sense someone planned out and planned hiding a body but not a random attack!! He could have possibly gone off on his own, but he would of had to have a substantial amount of money, which he might have since it was right after Christmas.He sounds like an extremely bright young man whom I pray has just took off for awhile…It makes the most sense… I hope they are not slowing down in NY, it sounds like people there have been awesome but I dont want them discouraged…I hope I dont offend anybody it is certainly not my intention! I want to hear the words “IANS HOME” . We hear so little here in Va and we feel so close to this please keep us updated…

  24. We still have pre-printed flyers in Harlem if you need them.

    I have a business on 124th and Lenox Ave (6th) in Harlem.
    These flyers are available for pick up if anyone needs them just email me or stop in the office.
    Thanks for those who have already picked up and distributed flyers in Harlem.

    Robb Pair
    Harlem Lofts Inc
    272 Lenox Ave (at 124th)
    New York NY 10027

  25. Most likely Mark, Nancy and Jamie, have law enforcement and private investigators aiding them in their search and prioritizing strategies. Please do not do this until you ask those with missing persons expertise about this.
    I noticed today that Ian is not profiled in the list of photographs of missing persons at Interpol click “missing persons” to the upper right of the page.

    We will not forget. We will not stop. Our prayers will continue. Best wishes to you all.

  26. I became aware of Ian’s disappearance through Karla Burnette. Karla and I became acquainted because of the loss of our sons. Your family has been through so much tragedy already. My heart was broken to learn of this situation. I think of you often and pray for Ian’s safe return. Know that you have not been forgotten.