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Classen School of Advanced Studies valedictorian disappears while hiking with family in Ecuador

August Reiger, 18, went missing Sunday while hiking with his family during a vacation in Ecuador. Reiger graduated as a valedictorian from Classen School of Advanced Studies in Oklahoma City last month.
BY BRYAN DEAN Modified: June 18, 2013 at 8:29 pm •  Published: June 18, 2013

“A kidnapping has never happened here before,” Chris Reiger said.

The family has not received any ransom calls, which would be likely in an abduction.

“He speaks Spanish,” Chris Reiger said. “He's 18. If he had wanted to go on that hike alone, I would have been fine with it.”

An American who now lives in Ecuador and works with the local authorities has been serving as a translator and keeping the family updated on the search.

“There is a massive search effort,” Chris Reiger said.

“That is the only thing I feel good about. They are doing everything they can.”

School community's reaction

An Oklahoma City Public Schools spokeswoman said August Reiger graduated last month from Classen School of Advanced Studies. He was an International Baccalaureate Valedictorian, a National Merit Scholar and an Oklahoma Academic Scholar.

Dixie Hendrix, president of the parent-teacher association at Classen School of Advanced Studies, said she knows August Reiger and his family.

“He's just a really great kid,” Hendrix said. “About 30 to 40 kids are valedictorian at Classen because so many of them have a high GPA. That means he was certainly a kid who was responsible, did everything he needed to do. He is also a funny guy.”

Hendrix said word of August Reiger's disappearance is spreading among the school community on social media.

“He's not the kind of kid that would cause anybody any trouble at all,” she said.

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