Search for Missing Hammond Man Moves South

"If he can hear us, Michael, we're looking for you and we want you home," his mother said.

The search for a father who disappeared after watching Friday night's Chicago Blackhawks game has moved to an area about 20 miles south of Crown Point, Ind.

Officials said they received a positive cell phone "ping" in the area from Michael Hernandez's cell phone. Roughly 120 volunteers combed fields and wooded land Thursday near DeMotte, Ind., looking for the man.

"If he can hear us, Michael, we're looking for you and we want you home," his mother, Tiffany Longoria said.

Hernandez, 23, was last seen at about 10 p.m. Friday wearing a black coat, blue jeans and a Blackhawks cap at the Safe House Bar and Grill in Crown Point, sheriff department spokeswoman Patti Van Til said.

It now has been almost a week since Longoria last spoke to her son. She talked to him on the phone after the Blackhawks game.

"He said he was coming home," Longoria said. But Hernandez never showed up.

"It's definitely worth it for all of us to search for him and bring him home," Miguel Vargas, a friend of the family, said.

Hernandez's family still has no idea why his cell phone would have pinged so much further south and said he is not the type to leave his job and twin daughters.

"I can't think of nothing bad happening to my little nephew," his uncle, Luis Alfaro, said. "He's a real good kid."

Police said Hernandez left the bar in a Blue 2008 Scion Hatch, with Indiana license plate number 606LTI, a car that still hasn't been located.

"We want him home. That's all, to come home," Longoria said.

As the search continues, anyone with any information is asked to contact the Lake County Sheriff's Office at 219-755-3334.

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