The last time Lori McNinch heard from her son, it was by cellphone at around 6 p.m. Tuesday.
"He was just walking through the woods, and we kept losing each other, but he said he was going to a cousin's house," she said. "I knew he'd come home because he didn't like to be away from home."
However, Wes McNinch Jr., 23, didn't come back to his home in rural Chester County. He hasn't been seen or heard from since.
"He's everything to me. I love him with all my heart," his mother said.
Eyewitness News was with search crews Friday on the third full day of searching. Dozens of firefighters, sheriff's deputies, rescue teams, volunteers and even friends and neighbors are looking for Wes McNinch. They have already combed the woods on foot, on horseback, by ATV and by helicopter with no sign of him.
Tracking dogs were brought in Wednesday, but heavy rain the night Wes McNinch went missing may have spoiled any trail left behind.
"It's a lot of hurt because this is something none of us ever expected," said Melba Carter, a lifelong friend of the family. "We're looking down holes, looking along creeks. There's lots of gullies out here too."
Sheriff's deputies aren't sure if foul play is involved or not. The last person to hear from Wes McNinch was the cousin he was walking to see. He'd called him on his cellphone and said he was lost in the woods and asked him to honk the horn so he could find the way to his house. That was during the night.
Sheriff's deputies were able to track his cellphone signal to an area where the search is ongoing. However, the phone battery died before they could get a more specific location.
As of Friday afternoon, search crews were regrouping and planning to walk through a swampy area of the woods, and continue checking along creek beds. They will keep searching over the weekend if necessary.
Family members tell Channel 9 that Wes McNinch suffers from seizures and has been three days without his medication. "I can't imagine what's happened to him," his mother said.
His dog, Willie, was with him on the walk Tuesday night. The dog returned home Wednesday alone.
Wes McNinch is tall and thin at 6 feet, 1 inch tall and about 140 pounds. He was last seen wearing blue jeans, a burgundy South Carolina shirt and gray shoes. He also has several tattoos.
If you've seen him, you're asked to call the Chester County Sheriff's Office at 803-581-5131.