Volunteer team starts fundraiser to assist search effort for missing Waukesha, Illinois women in Panama

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- A nonprofit volunteer organization has started a fundraiser to help assist with the search for two missing Americans in Panama.

Debra Velleman of Waukesha and Sue Borries of Illinois have been missing since Jan. 3 when a plane they were on crashed off the coast of Panama.

The families have expressed frustration over a lack of response from the U.S. government. They have resorted to contacting nonprofit organizations to help with the search effort.

That includes Bruce's Legacy, a nonprofit volunteer organization based out of Black River Falls, Wis. The group provides search and recovery operations for drowned victims to provide resolution for families, according to their website. Along with boats and equipment, the organization is providing expertise in coordinating the recovery.

Bruce's Legacy started a fundraiser to move forward with the search effort.

"It makes my nerves tingle to think money gets in the way of being able to give [the families] the support and closure they deserve," the organization wrote on the fundraiser page on Facebook. "Especially when I'm so confident in our ability to locate the victims."

Bruce's Legacy said in a post funds are needed to address equipment problems.

More information on how to donate can be found on Bruce's Legacy fundraiser page on Facebook, by clicking here.

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