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'Someone Knows Something': Family Of Missing Chef Lauren Cho Is Hoping For Help From The Public In Finding Answers

Lauren Cho was distraught when she vanished into the desert hills without a phone, food or water.

By Gina Tron
Lauren Cho Pd

The family of Lauren Cho has said they are hoping someone out there remembers something that can help them find the artist and chef who went missing over the summer.

The 30-year-old New Jersey woman, who loves to be called “El,” vanished after walking away from her residence in Yucca Valley, California on the afternoon of June 28.

“Someone knows something,” her sister recently wrote on the Find Lauren Cho Facebook page. “Maybe someone has seen something, and these pictures will jog their memory.”

The pictures are of tattoos that Cho, a beloved chef, and tattoo artist, had gotten inked on her body over the years. One is of a lamb with a pink bow, another of a snail atop a mushroom.

“El has a number of tattoos,” the Facebook post noted. “Many of them are not regularly visible in everyday street clothing, but we want to point out a few that could be easily noticed and are fairly unique.”

Cho and her former boyfriend, Cody Orell, drove cross country from New Jersey on his tour bus in 2020. They kicked off their new West Coast life by converting a school bus into a food truck in Bombay Beach. Most recently in Yucca, Cho was working as a chef for a collection of AirBnbs called The Whole.

Cho was distraught when she was last seen, according to her friend, Jeff Frost. He told local outlet KESQ in July that she had "some wishes to self-harm” before she walked into the nearby desert hills without her phone or any sustenance.

Cho’s sister asked the public to refrain from making judgments about the case.

“Just a gentle reminder that El is an actual person who is fiercely loved by many, and we see the posts, comments, and speculations made about her situation, her family, her friends, her mental health,” she wrote. “One day, El’s [family members] bound to come across all of this because nothing on the internet truly goes away. So continue to be respectful, good people. Continue to remember her name and that she hasn’t been found yet and we need her home."

While major searches to find Cho have been conducted over the summer, the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department formally suspended search and rescue efforts in July. They have classified Cho as a missing person case and said there is no evidence of foul play.

As a response to the enormous amount of attention that Gabby Petito received following her vanishing, there have been renewed efforts for attention on Cho's case.

Cho is described as 5 feet 3 inches tall, weighing 110 pounds, with black hair and brown eyes. She was last seen wearing a yellow T-shirt and jean shorts.