Yesterday, the Tampa Bay Tribune in Florida published the story of my uncle's cold case and the results of the Pasco County's recent search. I found the article online here. Overall, I liked what was written. I especially like the first sentence, "Gregory Greco was something of a free spirit and world traveler." This is true. Greg was a free spirit. He was an avid traveler. He lived his life to its capacity. The hardest part for me to read, though, was this:
Greco had slashed his wrists and jumped into the water. An autopsy at the time determined the cause of death to be suicide.
The article did manage to get a few things wrong, however, and this is where I will begin dissecting those points. Firstly, the article states, "[The Greco's] never reported him missing, instead hoping he had just gone overseas and would one day return." This is only half correct, and somewhat makes my family look like some naive child. The truth is, the police department told my grandfather NOT to report my uncle as missing. They said because he was an adult, that my grandfather shouldn't report it--and in fact--said my uncle would probably come back at some point. My grandfather was literally talked out of reporting my uncle as missing. So, that's on the police, not on us.
Second point: my grandfather does NOT still live in Port Richey--I guess it's just as well that they got this information wrong, as I know he doesn't want to be hounded by anyone.
Probably the biggest gripe I have with this story is this:
There were no efforts made to find Greco until last year, when his brother began looking into the disappearance. He contacted the National Missing and Unidentified Persons System, or NamUs, a Largo-based online listing of missing persons and unidentified remains.
This makes my family sound like we didn't care; that we never tried looking for Greg. Are you kidding me? Thanks for acting like we don't care. There were plenty of efforts made and plenty of cold tracks. Also, so many law enforcement types that my family tried to seek help from didn't seem to care, because my uncle was an adult, and not a child. No one gives a shit about missing adults. That became abundantly clear.
Reading this today was so very difficult, even though I knew it was coming. Overall, I feel okay with how it was written--at least they didn't try to make my uncle look like some "crazy junkie." They didn't take away his personhood, which I appreciate.
And overall, they did succinctly sum him up as "a free spirit and world traveler." I hope he's traveling wherever he is now.
I hope he's at peace.