Friends and neighbors remain worried about missing fifth-grader

by Carla Robinson
Posted 11/11/21

Qadr went missing from the 300 block of Glen Echo Road on the morning of Thursday, Oct. 21. She was last seen walking to the Henry Houston Elementary School on Allens Lane where she is a fifth-grader.

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Friends and neighbors remain worried about missing fifth-grader

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The Henry Houston Elementary Home and School Association is holding a vigil Wednesday evening for Qadr Williamson, the 10-year-old child who has been missing from her Mt. Airy foster home for the past three weeks. 

“We are gathering to stand together and light candles with the idea that we want to light Qadr’s way home,” said Jaime Lynn Longo, a board member of the school’s Home and School Association. “We want her to know that her Houston community is caring about and thinking about her.”

Qadr went missing from the 300 block of Glen Echo Road on the morning of Thursday, Oct. 21. She was last seen walking to the Henry Houston Elementary School on Allens Lane where she is a fifth-grader. She is 5' 5" tall and was believed to be wearing black pants, a black shirt, a blue hoodie and black sneakers. According to posts on social media, she left her home that morning with two siblings and did not show up at school that morning. 

Police reported yesterday that the Federal Bureau of Investigation is assisting Northwest Detectives Division with the investigation and that “we have no further information at this time.”

Last week, Philadelphia police said they had not issued an “Amber Alert” for the child because they do not have reason to believe that she is “in imminent danger.” 

“We believe that she left the neighborhood voluntarily and may now be in the care of relatives,” said Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw. As of press time on Tuesday, however, police still could not say exactly where Qadr is or who is caring for her. 

That’s not good enough for Longo, who was a foster parent herself and adopted both her children from the foster care system. She’s worried, she said, because the school sent a report home to parents stating that Qadr may have been taken across state lines by a family member and that the FBI is investigating it as a possible kidnapping. 

“If the Department of Human Services had determined that the family was not a good placement for her then we definitely do have some open questions about her ongoing safety,” said Longo. “There are a lot of open questions about their reasons for taking her out of the home.”

Longo said Qadr is one of her son’s classmates and that he has been asking about her with some concern. He is particularly anxious, she said. “For both of my children, this is their worst nightmare.” 

She also said that Qadr had been flourishing at school.

“I know that at the end of the remote learning period in June of last year, the entire class was expressing great pride in her,”  Longo said. “Even being remote, she had caught up on her reading level dramatically. She had made huge progress, worked really closely with her teacher and had really made a big leap forward.”

“Seeing how much the class was rallying around her and how much they are asking about her now, it’s clear that her Houston family cares very deeply about her.”

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