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Family friend shares message with missing Maury Co. teen

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A family friend shared a message for missing Maury Co. teen Mary Katherine Elizabeth Thomas.

A nationwide BOLO was issued for Thomas. Tad Cummins, her former teacher and the man believed to be with her, was added to TBI's Top 10 Most Wanted List Friday.

The two haven't been seen or heard from in four days. TBI said the situation is dire.

Paige Griffith said Thomas is a close friend of her own daughter. The family met her nearly a decade ago at church. Griffith sent a message to Cummins today.

"I am praying for your family. Mary Katherine Elizabeth Thomas is a child, she is a precious little girl and she needs to come back home and you have no business with her. She trusted you as a teacher and you took advantage of that. I beg you to either let her go, bring her home or call me and I will come get her."

The close family friend said she last saw the 15-year-old the day before the AMBER Alert on Sunday at the grocery store.

"She acted happy to see me, a couple of hugs...she is very close to me and my family," Griffith said. "We are so worried about her and I want her to know...Everybody wants you to come home, we all love and support you. We just want you home safe. I want to be able to hug you Your father is miserable. He says the house is not the same without you. This is the deepest pain he has ever felt. He wants you to know."

Griffith says she tried reaching out to Thomas on Facebook and posted her phone number.

"There is a way," Griffith said. "Leave a note somewhere, call me, tell someone else to call me. I will come get her anytime, day or night, anywhere in the United States, I will find a way."

There are many things that concern this mother of two, like the height listed for the victim on the Amber Alert.

"She's a lot smaller than the 5'5, and that just worries me that they're looking for someone taller," Griffith said. "She's got to be 5 ft. or less."

Griffith said Thomas should not worry about coming home.

"I want Mary Katherine to understand that no matter what has happened, she always has a safe place to land here and she is not to blame for this. She is innocent in this."

A prayer vigil is planned for Thomas on Saturday.

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