Prayer service for missing San Franciscans after airplane disappears in Northern California

Monday, November 4, 2019
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Family and friends of missing San Francisco residents, Justin Winfrey and Kayla Rodriguez, came for a prayer service at Third Baptist Church in San Francisco on Sunday, Nov. 3, 2019.

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- On Sunday night, at Third Baptist Church in San Francisco, Reverend Amos Brown, called for hope for Justin Winfrey and Kayla Rodriguez.

The two friends disappeared, after what was meant to be a quick trip.

"We shall not lose heart or even soul," said Rev. Brown.

On October 24, 27-year-old Rodriguez and 43-year-old Winfrey, boarded Winfrey's plane - a single engine Piper Arrow. They took off from Gnoss Field in Novato around 6pm.

But a few hours later, the plane disappeared from radar.

Rodriguez's family and friends traced their movements to Shelter Cove, along the Lost Coast in Humboldt County. Surveillance video shows the pair inside Gyppo Ale Mill. They told their server that they were heading back to San Francisco, and can be seen leaving the restaurant around 8:30 that night.

RELATED: Delivery nurse at San Francisco's CPMC and her friend disappear during plane trip to California's Lost Coast

The air strip at Shelter Cove Airport does not have lights and only operates during the day. However, witnesses say they saw a plane leave in the dark.

"I believe with all my heart and soul that him and Kayla are survivors," said Angelo King, who grew up with Winfrey in San Francisco. He's flown on Winfrey's plane, and describes his friend as a lifelong adventurer. "As crazy as it might sound, we just need to find them because he very well is surviving this thing, because he's just that kind of guy."

Winfrey's godmother, Carol O'Gilvey was also at the vigil. "He is very special, unusually special son," she said. "What I'm praying for is a miracle, praying that wherever he is, wherever they are, they're not suffering."

Winfrey is a businessman and landlord.

Rodriguez, a labor and delivery nurse at CPMC St. Luke's in Bernal Heights, is his tenant. Several of her co-workers took part in the service.

"I consider her one of my work daughters," said Sheila Brown, a fellow CPMC nurse. "Everyone is still looking and hoping that we find Kayla and Justin."

SFPD said that officials in Northern California are reviewing data in order to narrow the search field. Once that happens, many friends at the vigil said they'd like to go help look for Winfrey and Rodriguez.