FREMONT, Calif. - A $50,000 reward is being offered to help find a missing 12-year-old Fremont boy swept out to sea. Arunay Pruthi was caught by dangerous surf at Cowell Ranch State Beach south of Half Moon Bay this week.
More than 100 volunteers have been scouring nearby beaches for any sign of the 7th grader. In addition to a reward, there's a petition to resume the Coast Guard search and a Gofundme that's raised more than $100,000.
On Wednesday, classmates of Arunay Pruthi posted reward fliers for any sighting of the missing 12-year-old.
"I’m here to find my friend because he was really nice and always helped me," said 13-year-old Prisha.
Arunay was sucked into the ocean by a sneaker wave as he was playing on the beach with his family at Cowell Ranch State Beach on the Martin Luther King holiday. He was last seen 100 yards from shore.
"We are taking it day by day right now, we have a lot of community volunteers," said Family Friend Kalyan Gummadam.
"We have people coming from all over the place we have never met," said Family Friend Samya Dassarma.
Searchers are combing neighboring beaches on foot. From the air, a private helicopter is scouring the vast Pacific Ocean. Drones offered by private citizens are being used when the chopper isn't flying. Volunteers are on jet skis and boats out on the water.
"We’ve been going into lagoons, tide pools and creeks anywhere there's driftwood," said Family Friend Ozair Usmani. "We’ve been looking. We have not left any spots unchecked up and down the coast for about 20 miles."
A Gofundme has been set up to help pay for the search and $115,000 has been raised in two days.
More than 50,000 signatures on a petition for more help from the Coast Guard.
"He was very caring, very loving to his younger brother, that's why it breaks your heart," said Usmani.
Arunay is a 7th grader at Basis Independent School in Fremont. Counselors are on hand for student and staff.
In a statement the school writing, "Arunay is a passionate student, trusted friend, and enthusiastic classmate."
He is also a strong swimmer who loves soccer. Barcelona is his favorite. He plays for the Fremont Youth Soccer Club.
"You could say the star, he's probably the best on the team," said Teammate Leonardo Ramirez.
His fellow teammates finding it difficult to comprehend, no easy way to process it.
"I’ve heard stories like this but it's so surreal I just can't believe it's actually going on," said Ramirez.
The family doing all they can to have closure.
"Everybody’s broken down, these things are not supposed to happen," said Uncle Arvind Pruthi.
Searchers received a break in the weather on Wednesday. After very strong winds this week, the seas were calm and visibility was much better. The family is thankful for the all the support they've received.