TODAY   |  October 12, 2013

Search intensifies for missing NYC teenager with autism

Avonte Okendo, 14, was last seen on surveillance video running away from his New York City school. Over a week since then, and there’s still no sign of him. NBC’s Katy Tur reports.

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>>> searchers in new york are looking this morning for a missing teenager with autism. he was last seen on surveillance video a week ago and he hasn't been heard of from since. katie tur has more on the efforts to find him.

>> reporter: 14-year-old devonte was last seen on video last seen running away if his new york city school and that was last saturday. now eight days without any sign of him. his dad daniel.

>> i try not to think of the worse and i still have the support of everybody.

>> reporter: friday, as they have done every day, the boy's worn-out family comb the streets with the help of volunteers. people turn over manhole covers and swept the east river and everyone hoping the rescue doesn't turn into a recovery.

>> we get leads here and there throughout the day and we try to take them serious and call the police and the detectives.

>> reporter: now the search has gone national. autism speaks is offering a 70,000 reward for devontae's return. lisa goring --

>> he may not understand what they are saying. could you just imagine how he must be feeling and the anxiety? so he may not be able to understand what they are saying or if he can understand, he may not be able to communicate back what his needs are.

>> reporter: in new york the nypd has expanded efforts to find the boy in the subway system since the boy was known to like trains. this year alone, 14 kids with the disorder have wandered and died. according to the national center for missing and exploited dinner but dad daniel is not giving up.

>> he is definitely a fighter.

>> reporter: now still more searching and a vigil for a young boy lost in a big city . for "today," katie tur, nbc news, new york .