UPDATE: Debra Schmitt, 53, was found dead at about 3:30 p.m. Saturday afternoon, possibly in the backyard of her home in Ross, said a police officer who didn't want to be named, according to the Chronicle.
High school students in Marin County are getting more and more worried about a beloved teacher who hasn't been seen for a week.
The students played a role in the unfolding mystery because their teacher left them a cryptic "thank you" note on the blackboard the day before she went missing. She also left her school keys in the classroom. Dozens of them have been writing on her Facebook wall words of prayer and hope of her return:
Ms. Schmitt you need to come back to TL! You are the best teacher ever, no doubt. I need you again next year for senior english. You're my favorite teacher ever. I hope your safe and we all want and need you to come back. We miss you Ms. Schmitt!
In my life I have never had a teacher be so real with me and teach me so much our english department has a hole in it that will never be filled until Ms.Schmitt comes back i still need her for my senior year
The Ross Police Department said it considers Schmitt at risk, adding that she needs to take medication.
Police said she left her vehicle, ID and other personal belongings at her home and then left on foot. Schmitt had mentioned a trip to San Francisco near Golden Gate Park.
Schmitt is described is 5’7,” 120 pounds, with hazel eyes and brown hair. The Marin IJ quoted a Ross officer who said they don't believe that foul play or suicide is a factor in her disappearance.
Anyone with information can call Ross police at (415) 453-2727.