‘I Feel Like Dying Inside:’ Mother Desperate to Find Her Missing El Dorado County Daughter

Update: Loved ones will search for Heather Gumina Waters Tuesday starting at 6:30 p.m. They will meet in Placerville at Green Valley Community Church on Missouri Flat Road.

EL DORADO COUNTY -- Family and friends of an El Dorado County woman who has not been seen for more than two weeks came together for a vigil in her honor Thursday.

“Every minute of the day I feel like dying inside,” said Joanna Russell. “I do, I feel like dying because I didn’t protect her. I didn’t protect her.”

Russell’s 33-year-old daughter, Heather Gumina Waters, was last seen on July 16.

“Every day that goes by that I don’t see her, that I don’t hear her voice … ,” she said between tears.

Gumina Waters was last in the Pleasant Valley area.

Her 2005 black Infiniti Coupe, which is also gone, has distinctive, pink accents, including two ribbon stickers in the back window. The lid of the gas cap reads “His Queen.”

In addition to prayer, many of those who gathered at the vigil have done their own searches for Waters in the Placerville and Pleasant Valley area.

“We are working really hard to find her. Everybody is joined together in prayer. Bring her home," said friend Kathy Schneider.

The El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office told FOX40 deputies have not conducted a search for Gumina Waters because they don’t know her last whereabouts. They are asking the public for help with that information.

Deputies have searched her home looking for clues but that effort has not produced any releasable information on her whereabouts.

Russell is worried because her daughter had just been released from the hospital after breaking her collarbone. She cried to her mom over the pain.

She described her daughter as a loving mother of three children, ages 4, 10 and 14. She said Gumina Waters would never willingly leave her kids but the married mother of three has had no contact with them.

They were too emotional to be at the vigil Thursday night.

Russell also did not think she'd have the strength to attend the prayer vigil for her vanished child but she made it.

"God just moved me to come tonight because he said I have to be strong, I have to be strong for her,” she said. “So, I'm here. I'm here because I love my daughter."

If you know anything about Gumina Waters’ whereabouts, you are asked to call the sheriff’s office.

“Every day is hard,” Russell said. “It’s hard to breathe right now and I’m praying for your safe return.”

“I just feel sick to my stomach,” said her aunt, Amber Thomson. “I miss Heather. We all miss Heather."

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