January 15, 2007


TRENTON -- The ex-wife of missing Trenton businessman Joel Gove is calling on authorities in the Caribbean to bring in America’s FBI to help search for him on the rugged island of Saba. Amy Gonzales said that Gove, 47, of the Glen Afton section of the city, left on a Christmas Day flight to the island, which is part of the Netherlands Antilles, a Dutch-held group of islands.

She has accused island officials of not doing enough to find Gove because they are worried about harming their image as a tourist destination.

"There is nothing new," Amy Jones, an employee of Gove’s West State Street company, Habitat Management and Design, said yesterday.

Gonzales and co-workers are eagerly awaiting the island’s police report on the missing man."They’re not finished with their investigation," Jones said. Only a couple days ago, officials asked for his credit card records, said co-worker Lynn Ashton. Once the family receives a copy of the officials’ police report, they can take it to the FBI so they can get involved in the search, Gonzales said." They’ve done almost everything they (could) do and they need help from the United States," Gonzales said. "There are better resources here."

On Dec. 27, Gove left the Hotel Elmomo in the morning, bought a bottle of water at a store at the base of Too Far Trail at about 9:30 a.m. and started his hike up the rocky trail rimmed, in part, with cliffs. Gove, a very fit and healthy man, was last seen at 11:45 a.m. by another hiker who had explored the sulfur mine and saw Gove on his way down, said Gonzales, his former wife and mother of his 15-year-old daughter Georgia. That hiker said Gove looked fine, he wasn’t distressed or sweating and was very friendly.

...The case is eerily similar to that of Alabama teen Natalee Holloway who disappeared while on a high school trip to Dutch-held Aruba in 2005.

Gove is a successful environmental consultant and herpetologist who specializes in snakes and turtles. He is also very philanthropic in that he is politically passionate, is committed to the revitalization of Trenton and children’s welfare. He has served on the board of directors for Kidsbridge Children’s Museum since 1996, said Lynne Azarchi, executive director of the organization.

To help pay for the increasing costs of the search, Kidsbridge and others have set up a special fund to which people can donate.Checks or money orders can be sent to Kidsbridge Children’s Museum; P.O. Box 4561; Chambersburg Section; Trenton, NJ 08611.


Anonymous said...

Joel Gove is healthy, charming and wealthy. He would easily become a target for the Dutch gay men in that part of the rugged world in Saba island on the Christmas Day (The Tell Day for the gays in Holland.) It will suppose for the island police to say Joel ran away with another man to Aruba. Some of the Netherlands Antilles cult sex group prefer mature and rich American white men. Joel probably met the same fate as Natalee. Doped by the rape drug in his water bottle, then being kidnaped and gang raped by the Dutch monsters, and disposed of his body completely in the cliff caves. Cannibalism was a high possibility. No kidding.

Anonymous said...

The majority of these Dutch tourists on their small Dutch Caribbean islands are outcasts and sex offenders. Very few tourists from other countries will visit these pirates nests. For the past hundred years the Dutch pirate ships controlled a large slaves trading post on Saba island. It is not a surprise when a few navie American tourists ventured into these untouchable islands and themsleves into trouble. The Dutch is the most evil European criminals in the world.

James Wright said...

As an American living and working on the dutch Island of Saba, I have to say I am ashamed to read the negative comments posted here. I would like to remind any traveller, that when visiting ANY PLACE abroad they should abide by the recommendations and laws of that country. Secondly, this is a matter of perspective. Let's compare any criminal ratings of even the smallest of U.S. cities with Saba. You'll be further ashamed to realize that we arn't even on the charts. More rapes (gay, straight, underage, etc), murders, kidnappings, drug trafficking, sex trafficking happen in the U.S. on a daily basis then would ever occur here in 100 years. The truth is, Saba is a very small peacefull island with no real criminal records. Lastly, there is no need to jump to conclusions or insinuations of "foul play". Quite simply, Saba is rugged and can be dangerous for ANY level of hiker. It's quite possible to get stuck, break a leg, or lost completely off the radar here or even go into the ocean. I feel it's entirely up to the TOURIST to rate their skill level and take all necessary precautions. We can not monitor every person coming to this island nor hold their hand through all the trails. Blaming an entire island for what may be a lack of common sense is a cheap trick. People have to take full responsibility and blame for their actions. No matter where you are in the world. Saba is no different.

Anonymous said...

Saba- "With no real criminal records" Wasn't that Arubas claim also. No crime. But we all have found out that those stats were BS. We also found out that in Aruba. That they have a higher murder rate then the USA does per person living in the country. Hey James. Didn't your tourist people not want to go public with this? Trying to save tourism?

Tara Hassell said...

Have any of you ignorant people ever been to Saba? Have you? Give me a damn break. Take a trip to Saba. And you can see for yourself. Saba's population is one of the friendliest you will ever encounter. I was born and raised on Saba, and now live in Florida. And I go home every few years, I was home over the summer of 2006. And I can tell you how safe Saba is. I am a 22 year old female who can walk home at 2am, 3am, 4am, 5am, and not ever have a concern about being raped, kidnapped, drugged or murdered. The only damn concern would be falling over a wall and down a cliff, because roads and trails are not safe. Especially for someone not from there, someone who has never hiked the trails. It is not recommended by any local on the island for tourists to go hiking on their own. Mr. Gove took it upon himself to venture out alone. How many people disappear in the US on a daily basis? So many, most of them dont make the news, they show up in a postcard in my mail. Reading this really disappoints me. Living in the US is wonderful, but its sad to know how ignorant some of its inhabitants are. Saba has not had a murder in over 15 years. Saba is the only island in the Caribbean you can sleep with your windows and doors open, and not have to worry about anything. Everyone on Saba knows everyone. You can leve your keys in your car ignition, and not worry about your car being stolen. The population of Saba is like one big family. And for Saba to be slandered, to destroy its little tourism, and ruin its economy, over something that NO ONE has 100% of the facts is the most BS I've witnessed in a long time. Lets not forget, half the population of this country came from Europe. The Dutch are the most evil Europeans? Is it the Dutch who came to this country in 1492 and killed the Native Americans? Dont just bring up random stuff to prove an unproven point. Why has it not been included in any article that Mr. Gove had suicide journals, information on how to disappear and never be found, ways to kill himself, why hasnt this been brought up. Until one of you damn fools go to Saba, just stop. And since you have so much shit to say, dont be a pussy and keep signing it anonymous. Lets try and act like adults. Some of you have way too much time on your hands. Since your so damn concerned, go look for him yourself. Otherwise, keep your ignorant opinions to yourself.

Deb357 said...

The biggest issue for me with Saba authorities is not allowing the family to place "missing" posters up because they fear it would harm their tourism. They are placing their tourism over a human being. This does not stomache well with most people no matter what country you are from. It is just inhumane not to let a family place up "missing" posters.

You never know, someone might see Grove and can notify the proper authorities of where and when they saw him. He could of fell and hit his head and don't remember who he is. He could of gotten hurt bad and is in someones care.

Simple logic tells you that Saba is following Aruba's footsteps just by them saying no to placing their tourism first and not allowing the posters up. It's wrong on so many level's.

James Wright said...

Comparing Aruba and Saba, is like comparing apples to oranges. In fact, any mention of Saba really does not belong on this Blog. Aruba is a very independent island and has little to do with Saba. The only real relation was that it's roots were Dutch. That is about where any similiarties end. In truth, life on Saba is pretty simple and having a small tourist trade (compared to other islands) would bring concerns of lowering tourism. The eco-tourism trade here on Saba is very important to the businesses. Therefore, the initial reaction is most likely fear. Its common. It isnt evil or demonic, nor does it scream "foul play". And for those screaming about not wanting to have posters - There has been posters on Saba! I myself have seen them and they been up for awhile now. Even without posters, Saba is 5sq miles. We all know each other and anyone different stands out completely. If someone were missing and people seen him, it would be reported immediately. Unlike many other islands, we do not ignore tourists or pretend they do not exist. Now that being said, I welcome anyone who's made uneducated biased comments about Saba to come visit. Once you visit you'll realize you were sorely mistaken.

Tim van Oosteren said...

Deb357, I live on Saba and was away on vacation when this happened but when I returned I saw missing posters on all the bullitin boards here and in all the shops and banks as well with a pic of Joel so I don't know what all the fuss is about NO missing posters. And even if there were no missing posters as Tara said try and visit Saba before you start blabberin crap that doesn't make sense. Saba is very small and everyone knows everyone so even if Joel would pop up again not remembering a thing as you say everyone would know who he is simply because everyone knows pretty much everything that happens here because it is so small and if one person knows what he looks like the whole island knows as well. So why don't you ponder on that a bit and come visit us to find out for yourself, or are you scared of the gay dutch rape terrorists that are just wandering the streets waiting for some rich helpless american to pop up. And by the way the FBI has just been to Saba and they were impressed with how the local police handeled the matter. The US consulent also stated that what americans are placing on these web sites are a complete disgrace. So stop putting shame on your people.

Ugly American Tourist said...

I've been to Saba many times as tourist and it is without a doubt the safest destination to which I have travelled. If you have never been there you could not possibly understand the speed with which news travels from one side of the island to the other. If anything out of the ordinary happens in the Bottom you know about it in Windwardside within 20 minutes- even faster now that everyone has a "chippie". The trails and "the road" are pretty treacherous and I've often wondered how I made it from the Swinging Doors in Windwardside back to my cottage without a 2000 foot detour into the Caribbean sea. I don't doubt for a second that the Sabans have done, and will continue to go, to the furthest extent possible to find out what happened to Mr Gove.

Saba's touristism clients are a hearty and well-informed bunch and it is doubtful that this story will deter them from a trip to Saba.

erik bright said...

Well...it all sounds suspect to me...having visited SABA a few months ago, I was struck by the fact that everyone waves to each other and says hello.... I mean, I didn’t even know these people! Stick out your thumb on the road and people stop to give you a ride...I mean, they even go out of the way to drop you off at your destination! Stranger still is the fact that if you go to any retail establishment and make a purchase without cash in hand, they write an IOU and let you walk out with the merchandise!!! I mean, this whole island is off the charts! Unless Mr.Grove disappeared because the universe decided he was done spending time in his body, I suspect he decided to go undercover and escape the reality of his life in the United States. I was certainly tempted myself before I returned.

Anonymous said...


I think I'm experiencing Dejavu!

We heard all this crap after Natalee Holloway disappeared.

Safe island............good cops........good investigation.....doing all they can........

And now I see the "runaway" theory has been thrown out here as well.

Give me a break!!!! We've learned thru the Holloway case just how these small tourist relying islands skew their crime stats so as not to hurt their tourism.....we've also seen the Dutch cronyism at work.

These excuses and attempts at misleading the public didn't work then, and they're certainly not going to work now.

Just the simple fact that an American family is crying for help, saying authorities are more concerned about tourism, should make us all stand up and take notice.

Stop wasting your time trying to float your BS here - we're not buying it!!

Heather Fougnier said...

My husband and I are Americans who live in Saba part-time. I agree with what Erik said -- Sabans are some of the friendliest people in the world.

As a woman, I feel safe to hike the trails every day by myself. I would not do this in the US -- and probably not many other places in the world, but in Saba, I feel completely safe.

We've seen people leave backpacs on the trails for hours and when they come back, everything is still there. We've experienced the same ourselves when leaving our backpacks on the beach when snorkeling. Where else could you do that?

While everyone has the right to make their own choices and take their own risks, I would not hike the Zion's Hill area trails on my own. The reason has nothing to do with crime and everything to do with the safety of the trails for solo hikers.

Just like anywhere, some trails are better hiked with a buddy. I stick to the Windwardside-area trails when I'm alone, since they are easier for solo hikers and much more well-traveled.

There's also a trail right near the All Too Far (The North Face), which should only be hiked with a guide because it is easy to get lost and/or slip and fall (there are signs that say this).

We hope that this mystery is soon solved and our thoughts and prayers go out to Mr. Gove, his family and his friends.

In the meantime, we hope others will spend time in Saba or ask those of us who've been there -- before judging it or it's people. There is nowhere else on the world I'd rather be than Saba.

It's like stepping back in time, when the world was a safer place and people all trusted one another.

If you can't go to Saba, consider reading about it in our blog -- to see through the eyes of two Americans who left the "rat race" to live in paradise.


Anonymous said...

WOW! I cannot belive What I am reading. I have lived on Saba all my life and people who know nothing about Saba have so much to say. Everyday we see the American news. So many dissapearing every hour, without a trace. I first believed Mr. Gove was hurt and not able to get help, but now i am sure he left the island illegally, because Saba is 5 square miles people, and we have done everything to find him. It hurts our local people to know that Mr. Gove is missing, and we want nothing less than to find him safe. Why do some of you Americans have to result trash talking Saba. That is not going to help find him. Really people!! I believe That Mr. Gove had his own agenda and his family need to come clean about his history in order to help the investigation. Don't come to Saba to spoil our home because your home is a mess!! There is still some paradise left in the world you can find it on Saba. We treat everybody like family the minute you get off the plane. We will continue to our best to solve this case. Don't go around making accusations and bad talking Saba when you know nothing about our way of life.

Anonymous said...

I am ashamed of what has been written about Saba and had to drop a few lines. First of all Saba is NO Gay Island. Before u Americans bad talk Saba remember America is full of nasty gay men that rape little boys and kidnap them and your FBI sometimes dont EVER find them like the 15yr old they found the other day after 4yrs!!! Now that one American went missing, hiking without a guide which is against the rules on Saba you all want to blame the Island for this excuse me!! GET SOME COMMON SENSE!! You all did it with Aruba but dont try it with Saba. I am very sorry for the family of Mr.Gove but they need to focus on the fact that maybe he had some problems and did a disapearing act stop trying to spoil our unspoiled island with ur BS. BY the way the Police here did everything they could have done to find him.

Anonymous said...

Americanos, please stop spending so much time trying to solve the rest of the worlds problems and start focussing on the mess you live in. Maybe if at least 10% of your energy you put in other parts of the world was used in your so beloved country America you all might be able to solve some of the crap you all create everyday there. Stop getting brainwashed from your leaders and speak out to them. They are the ones that need all the help they can get.

Anonymous said...


Concerned SABAN!!! said...

Being born and raised on Saba for 18 years I can't believe the Bs that I am reading here tonight. Americans come to an island as friendly and peaceful as Saba and want to destroy its name just for the sake of some careless "AMERICAN".
What you all fail to realize is when you all come to Saba you are treated like your one of us or even better. But I guess being one of us is an insult to you upperclass self-centered pigs!!! You want to destroy everything that does not profit you or your country. Unlike you many of us have to work hard for everything that we have. We are not born in high upperclass families and inherit our families' wealth.

Why is it that most Americans come to the Caribbean if we are such savages? Why don’t they just go visit other parts of the US? Oh, could it be the reason that your lifestyles are BORING, go to another place in the US just to see more skyscrapers, and clog your lungs with more pollution. After a while skyscrapers, just become sky scrappers and no longer intriguing.. If they ever were to begin with..

Saba, as it has been mentioned many times before is only 5 sq miles and everyone knows that news travels quicker than a blink of an eye. These comments you are making about an island you have no knowledge about is disgraceful and very disappointing.... Americans are always so highly thought of ,we always think that you guys provide the best of everything especially when it comes to education. But what I am seeing here is that if any of you are educated you would know that to have an argument you need to have done sufficient research which would give you factual information which you could then back up by the evidence you have found..

And for the comment on gays and cannibalism taking place on Saba just shows how stupid some people can really be. It is your ethnocentric views that have blinded you and all of your thoughts. For the one that claimed that he was probably drugged by the water in which he bought is even more BS... because if any of you have brains or some sort of intelligence you would realize that a bottle of water which is bought in a store is sealed. ... so the only way drugs could get into his water is if he drugged himself!!!! well being that he had those journals I wouldn’t be surprised... You have been brain washed in believing that anything out of the states is poor and unruly. And this all because of the hypocritical movies your American directors produce. And from these FICTIONAL MOVIES you almost automatically believe that we are a bunch of savages..and while doing so also profiting from it . (and if anyone should be considered savages it should be AMericans who clearly would do anything for money!)
Yeah, you have the right to think what you want but to destroy Saba’s reputation just shows how senseless and ignorant you are.
But I guess it is just the American thing to do bash and destroy anything that isn’t American.
P.s. I REGRET the days I thought AMerican culture was better than the life here on paradise!


Gay rapist and terrorits..... what a load of Bull....

It really is amazing to see jus how ignorant some people can be. But I glad that there are some people out there other than my fellow Saban's who've writting soemthing positive on the blog about Saba.

Tell me those of you who are more concerned about trashing Saba, are those American's being forced to write nice and honest things about Saba?? Really?? What do you think?
It seems that most of you are so quick to jump the gun and start bashing the hell out of places you know nothing about.

As stated above, Saba is a small island, we have somewhere around 2,000 people living on our island, and a good number of those people are Medical Students living on the island from America(yeah scary huh)Europe, Australia, India, China, Asia,Africa and lord knows the list goes on. Why hasn't anything happened to any of these non-Saban's is Saba is such a curupt and bad place?

What happened to Mr. Gove is extremely sad. But take in account. Saba is small yes, but not of or trails are easy to hike and most require a guide no matter who great of a hiker you may be. So yes he could have fell or gotten hurt and even lord forbid fell of a cliff and into the ocean, but all of these points have been checked into and double checked. As pointed out above, a journal was found amongst Mr. Gove's things in his villa, where he stated ways in which to disappear, and even the thought of suicide. It's sad, but maybe it's a possibilty. Most ppl try not to think the worst of ppl they dont know, so i'll try and believe that Mr. Gove is missing and he'll be found!

At the moment the FBI is on the island assisiting our Police Dept. in the search, and have brought 7 trained dogs to help locate Mr. Gove. So I'm praying that they do find him or some evidence of what happened to him.

However so far nothin has been found, not backpack,not article of clothing... nada zip.... so tell me what could have happened to him?? (by the way if someone is going to post some ignorant bullshit as a responce, pls save me the time and annoyance of reading it)

Again, stop destroyin someplace you dont know, if it wasn't for this indident no of you would have ever heard of Saba, so maybe isn't of being such... big mouthed @sses take a trip to Saba and see for your self. Come see or island of good, beauty and unspoiled nature. Come breathe some fresh air and swin in our crystal clear blue ocean.

Anonymous said...

Hi fellow Sabans, please try and write legible English.
It is actually great that thanks to some morons out there,Sabans have joined together on a blog to promote their island. Afterall,we are constantly criticizing each other and very often you can hear islanders speak negative of their island and wishing they were residing else where. It is through the eyes of visitors that Sabans see the beauty that surrounds them and learn to appreciate the tranquil, stressfree life they take for granted.
Now don't you think for one minute that I condone the negative remarks stated about Saba, however you must realize that all those negative statements were made by those who thrive on ignorance and
We all love the USA, we are dearly connected by family and friends and we know what a huge,powerful and yes GREAT country it is. However, between the good, you're sure to find some real "door-knob" mentality characters like everywhere else, Saba included.
So take some chillpills Sabans,you know your island and you also know that anyone with half a brain can go on-line and read all about the unspoiled queen.Save your time and energy and put it to good use by being nice to each other.

saban making a point said...


Be good to one another, yes! Not defend our little island, NO!
Yes like everywhere else, not all Saban's get along on a daily bases but if something happens everyone pulls together as one. (But yet you miss/mister "be nice to each other" starts off by being insulting, not much sense finishing the way you did!)

Why shouldn't we speak up against something that is so wrong? Should we just ignore it and pretend that none of it ever happened? Well sorry to be the one with the reality check, it did happen and Saba is being destroyed, bad talked and stained with horrible words and accusations!

Yes, the USA is a good country but toss aside what’s yours so you can fit into another society, which most American’s portray as the best country in the world, where as Great America is as messed up as anywhere else in the world and even more so! I’m not saying this place isn’t good, and that they don’t have there good points but they have quiet a few bad points as well. And overly corrupt government, murders, rapes, people going missing/kidnapped, kids being kidnapped from parents home and sold, kids being molested, major drug trafficking, and believe you me the list goes on!

At least you can say on Saba you don’t have to be watching over your back every minute of the day, you don’t have to worry about your kids being snatched away while there outside there homes playing, you can walk the street at night and not worry that something horrible is going to happen to you, you can sleep with your doors and windows unlocked and not fear for being murdered in you sleep! This is SABA, the SAFEST place on earth! Come on!! Why shouldn’t we let the world know what a touch of paradise we have!! Why shouldn’t we proud of where we come from!?