The parents of Michael “Mike” McClain, who has been missing for five months, say they have hope their son will return home.
“I pray that I’ll open my eyes tomorrow and he’ll be back,” Mike’s mother, Paula Judkins, told Dateline. “I haven’t given up hope that he’s alive and that he’ll come home to us.”
Mike, 29, was last heard from around 2 a.m. Sunday, April 21, after he left the Tropical Lounge on West Hollis Street in Nashua, New Hampshire.
There has been no activity on his social media accounts or credit cards since then.
Mike lives in Manchester, New Hampshire, but was visiting the nightclub in Nashua with friends that Saturday night when an altercation broke out between two young women, according to Mike’s father, Edward McClain.
The altercation escalated outside the club and Mike, who knew one of the women, separated them to “diffuse the situation,” Edward said.
Nashua Police confirmed to Dateline that they arrived on the scene and the crowd dispersed. Friends who were with Mike at the club told police that’s when they became separated.
Mike’s father believes his son left the area on foot because his car was back at a friend’s house in Manchester.
Edward told Dateline that shortly before 2 a.m., Mike called his boss and told her, “They’re after me. More than one.” When she tried to call him back, there was no answer.
Mike’s phone was last pinged at the McDonald’s on East Hollis Street around 2 a.m. After that, no one could reach him.
When Mike did not return phone calls to his mother and grandmother on Easter, or his sister on her birthday, his parents knew something was wrong.
“Michael and I were very close. We spoke every other day,” Mike’s mother, Paula, told Dateline. “He was the sunshine of my life. And now my days are just gray.”
Paula said the last five months have been a struggle, but she’s trying to be strong for her 13-year-old daughter.
“When you’re a mom, your child is your world,” Paula said. “And right now my world is falling apart. But I gotta keep on for my daughter. And for Mike. I’m holding on to my faith.”
Mike, who is described by his father a jokester and someone who loves life, graduated from Hesser College with a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice. He now works with children with autism at the nonprofit organization, Easterseals.
“Man would not just walk away like that,” Edward said. “He would not walk away from all the love he has here.” Edward told Dateline he calls Mike “Man” because he called him “Little Man” when he was a child, and the name stuck.
Edward and Paula, who both live in Connecticut, have traveled to New Hampshire many times since their son vanished, searching for answers and talking with people who might have seen something that night.
“Let’s just say it’s our second home,” Edward said. “We search the woods, the alleyways, the water, everywhere we can… we just want to know where our son is. Miracles do happen. We just need one.”
Nashua Police Lt. Daniel Mederos told Dateline that Mike’s case is still an open investigation and the Nashua Police Department is continuing to follow up on all leads and tips that they receive. They would not comment further on the investigation.
Mike is described as 5 feet, 10 inches tall, weighing about 190 pounds. He has brown eyes but wears green contacts, he has brown hair in braids, and has a goatee-style beard. He has various tattoos on his hands and arms.