Iraq war veteran missing for two weeks

SNELLVILLE - A 26-year-old Snellville man who did two tours of duty in Iraq has been missing for two weeks.

Gwinnett County police are investigating the disappearance of Jason Michael Roark. He was last seen leaving a Snellville hotel at 7 a.m. Nov. 9 in his 2000 black Honda Accord with Paulding County tag ASL0280. The car has a large Florida gator symbol in the window. Police said they do not suspect foul play at this point, but it has not been ruled out.

Roark enlisted in the Army after studying at the University of Florida. He was stationed at Ft. Bragg and served with a Special Operations Forces psychological unit.

"He joined the Army as a way to pay for school," said his mother, Terry Roark, of Dallas, Ga. "But after his first tour of duty in Iraq, he had trouble readjusting to civilian life so he went back."

Roark rose to the rank of sergeant, then left the Army in October 2005. He had been treated for depression and post-traumatic stress syndrome since returning home, but had been handling it well, his mother said.

"He never talked to his dad or me about what happened over there and we didn't push it," she said. "His friends said he was in the best spirits he'd been in in a long time."

She doesn't believe her only child just walked away on an extended vacation. Roark started a new job as an assistant manager at Texas Roadhouse in Snellville three months ago, and was excited about the possibility of a promotion, Mrs. Roark said.

"It's like he was just in a 'poof'," she said. "No sightings, no traces of him anywhere. He has no money, no credit cards, and was last seen in blue jeans and a T-shirt. No coat."

Roark has a cell phone, but it has been turned off since he disappeared.

"We have to take every day as it comes," she said. "It's really hard."

Anyone with any information about Roark is asked to call the Gwinnett County Police Department at 770-513-5300.