1. Regarding your newest book in the "Missing 411" series entitled "The Devil's in the Detail" I see that on the very first page you have all these locations listed like Devil's point or Devil Bog Brook, etc. What point are you trying to get across?
Readers of my past books understand that there are an abnormal number of individuals that have vanished in areas with “Devil” in the name. There are too many cases with this coincidence to be ignored. It would be nice to understand how these locations obtained their name, but that appears to be impossible.
The book description on our website says that we recommend that people not purchase and read this latest book if they haven’t read at least one of the other “Missing 411” book. This latest work is a culmination of almost five years of research and three other books. Our previous books are walking readers down the same path we took during our research and to understand many of the connections we point to in this book, you need to read one of the others.
There is an old saying, “The Devil is in the Detail,” meaning, the stories are nice and interesting, but there is a current of commonality in the case detail that will be readily understood by reading the books and looking at hundreds of cases.
2. One of the big mysteries of all these missing people is of course what is happening to them. I know your stance on this is because of the loved ones involved. But don't we need to know what is happening to them? So we can protect ourselves and stop it. Has your stance on this changed any?
Our research is about understanding what is happening to these people. Until you understand what is happening, you can’t say who or what is doing it. I remember after the release of “Missing 411 Eastern United States” and “Missing 411 Western United States,” many people stated that we knew exactly what was happening and accused us of holding back answers.
People need to read the latest book and then compare the amount of knowledge we’ve gathered in the last 5 years and with the information from the first books. The first books information is still valid and important, we are just stretching the profile. In “Missing 411-The Devil’s in the Detail” we will drastically challenge the readers paradigm. If the cases fit the profile we’ve established, they will be disclosed. We now have cases where people have disappeared on a boat and a comparative analysis of the Bermuda Triangle and people we have documented as missing, it’s quite revealing.
The first books centered on the United States and Canada, later volumes expose other countries and cases that clearly fit our profile. What may have appeared to some to be just a North American issue has now evolved into a worldwide problem.
We are a small group of researchers with a budget that is extremely small. Think back to the Green River Killer case In Washington. They had twenty investigators working full time with an enormous budget. It took them decades to develop a suspect and the evidence to prosecute. In British Columbia there are dozens of people missing in a case the RCMP is calling the “Highway of Tears.” There is a 50-person task force working these cases for the last decade with no arrests. The Highway of Tears is a confined highway in central British Columbia. Our cases are spread throughout the world where we can’t even travel to and interview witnesses and view evidence. This isn’t as easy as some may believe.
At the time we release data to support a hypothesis on this issue, it better be solid with supporting evidence (circumstantial, witness statements, physical evidence) that can be proven. If we want victims and their families to feel comfortable approaching us, we need to maintain credibility and integrity. Once any group releases a theory, this opens the doors to every blogger and amateur researcher to attack the theory and personally attack us. We have provided a lengthy history of factual disappearances that boggle the minds of readers. Until we have facts to support a theory, you won’t see us making allegations on what is happening. If we do find peripheral facts that show hikers, backpackers, etc are safe when operating under specific conditions, we will make a public statement about that. Example, we have stated many times, we do not have a case of a missing person that fits our profile when that individual was carrying a firearm and a personal transponder, we recommend carrying both.
3. I notice there are some cases in Florida where I live now. Great to know as I'm walking the trails. Could you share some of the interesting ones with us and some of the common characteristics? I noticed no cases from Georgia in the book which is where I was born but on the map I see a few marked.
Here is a paradigm changing case directly from the book. If people thought they understood what was happening to the missing, this will alter your thinking.
Al Snider Age at disappearance: 28 years
C. H. Trotter Age at disappearance: 48 years
Don Frasier Age at disappearance: Unknown
Missing: March 5, 1948-5pm, Sandy Key, FL
Be ready for a profound paradigm change. The past three “Missing 411” books have dealt with disappearances on land, now we are moving to water. I have been reminded numerous times that as long as the disappearance matches the profile we’ve established, we must include it. This case matches the profile in many ways. Don’t be disturbed that we are including this case until you’ve read the facts. If we were to exclude this case because it wasn’t identical to the other 1200+ cases, we wouldn’t be doing true research. We’d merely be looking for cases that met a specific niche.
Al Snider was one of the best jockeys in the world. In the days previous to his disappearance, he had rode Citation and won the Flamingo Stakes at Hialeah Park. On March 4 1948 he was offered a full time contract by the prestigious Calumet Farm’s to ride their ponies. Snider was destined to ride Citation at the Kentucky Derby, a dream ride.
On March 5 1948 in the afternoon hours, Snider, Trotter (Horse Trainer), Frasier (Canadian Manufacturer) and others had been on the “Evelyn K”, a 65-foot yacht owned by John B. Campbell, the secretary of New York Racing. The skipper pulled into Sandy Key and the three men got into a 15-foot wooden skiff to catch Redfish. An April 30 1998 article in the Sun Sentinel interviewed witnesses to the disappearance and explained how fast a storm came up:” One minute, Snider and his friends could be seen sitting on the skiff, fishing in calm channel waters. The next minute, under gusting winds and rolling waters, they were gone.” People aboard the Evelyn K were watching the skiff and saw it disappear behind the palms, the last time the men were seen. Later in the same article was this: “Newspaper accounts say the storm was accompanied by 45 mph winds, winds which toppled a 70-foot elevator tower on Miami Beach and snapped telephone lines. “It was a very unusual storm,” Trotter recalled (Trotters son). It became so dark, and it seemed to last about an hour. There was lightning, heavy winds.”
The crew of the Evelyn K went straight into the area with deep enough water looking for the skiff and spent considerable time searching. They couldn’t locate it.
The Coast Guard was immediately advised and soon after a major search was started. The Evelyn K made it back to port without any damage. In a strange coincidence, Gregory Peck’s yacht (The Tonga) was also in the area and made it back to port without any damage.
The Coast Guard contacted other armed forces and asked for assistance. Soon there were over thirty planes, boats, blimps and helicopters looking for the lost men. One week after the disappearance, the men’s skiff was found ten miles south of Everglades City, overturned in Rabbit key. The life preservers and everything in the skiff was gone. There was a small rope dangling from the front. There were no oars, equipment, nothing.
On March 16 there was another major incident taking place in conjunction with the search. A March 17 1948 article in the St. Petersburg Times had this description: “Tragedy nearly struck twice when a large Army helicopter aiding in the search crashed in the thick mangrove swamps on a small island in Chatham River. The crafts three occupants escaped unhurt, however. The helicopter had been flying low over a roofless shack on a small island when a downdraft plunged it into the ground.” As you read this book, make a mental note of the number of times aircraft crash in conjunction with these search and rescues. It seems there is an abnormal amount of crashes. In case you wandered where the Army was searching for the men, inside Everglades National Park.
In the three weeks of the search there were a number of items found that were initially thought to be associated with the men. Footprints were found on a remote island and Bloodhounds were put on them. They found nothing. There was a hat found that was supposedly worn by Canadian manufacturer Don Frasier. The hat was located floating in a remote canal. The Army sent a series of troops into the area on four-day assignments. They found nothing. In another strange coincidence, there was an arrow found made of sticks in the sand. Troops were sent into that area and also found nothing. There was even a bottle found floating weeks after the incident that seemed that it might have come from the men. There was writing scratched into the bottle, this lead led nowhere.
Decades later, no evidence of where the men went was ever located. Articles continually reminded readers that the area where the men vanished had very shallow water. They could easily have gotten out of the boat, walked to land and weathered the storm. Other articles say that Al Snider and Trotter were cautious and honorable men that would’ve pulled up anchor and gone back to the Evelyn K at the first sign of bad weather.
The factors in this disappearance that match what I’ve written about in the past are stunning. Bad weather inundates the area for an hour, causes massive confusion and the disappearance is set in motion. Bloodhounds, search and rescue planes and ground teams find nothing. Decades after the disappearance, not even a piece of the men’s clothing has ever been found. I think the helicopter crash is an unusual coincidence that happens too frequently in these cases.
When Al Snider was invited to attend the fishing adventure on the Evelyn K, he immediately called his best friend, Eddie Arcaro in California and invited him. Arcaro had a ride set in California and couldn’t get away. In one of the most unusual coincidences I have ever written about, Al’s best friend, Eddie Arcaro was signed by Calumet Farms and rode Citation to the Triple Crown. In an absolute display of how honorable Arcaro was, he gave half his earnings for winning the Triple Crown to Al’s daughter, Nancy.
4. Why is bad weather a common theme in so many of these missing person cases?
As a researcher who has reviewed thousands of cases, certain facts continually make their appearance on missing person cases; a change in weather is one of them. It does appear that in an abnormal number of cases we profile, the weather changes drastically immediately after a person disappears. This change does have an impact on search techniques, effectiveness of the search and the ability of canines to track a scent.
Many readers have reminded us that we have been manipulating weather for decades. Cloud seeding is done regularly throughout North America as an effort to stimulate precipitation. We don’t believe that this can be associated with our cases because the change in weather occurs rapidly in the missing cases and cloud seeding has a much slower process. We are also aware of many allegations floating through science that our military has been testing methods at weather manipulation for decades, to the point that the United Nations has a charter stating that nations cannot use weather changing methods to obtain a strategic advantage during war times. It would be doubtful that the U.N. charter would exist unless nations could manipulate weather to a drastic extent. I’m not implying that our nation is playing a part in missing people; I’m merely showing that weather can be manipulated.
5. I got your Missing 411 Cluster map and I know a lot of missing cases seem to happen around bodies of water, correct? I know you mention the Great Lakes being a revelation. Why is that? Also what else can you tell us about this map?
The cluster map has changed drastically in the last 5 years. When we originally started, there were no clusters of missing people around the Great Lakes, now there are fifteen. When you examine the map closely, clusters appear in proximity to water (Pacific and Atlantic Ocean and the Great Lakes) or they are in mountains. There are no clusters and almost no missing cases down the middle of the United States. We had been tracking missing people in Canada adjacent to the Great Lakes but we hadn’t understood that there was a clustering effect until they were mapped. For people who do not know, The Great Lakes has a healthy history of disappearing ships, people and missing airplanes. Many writers have commented that the Great Lakes could easily be another Bermuda Triangle. Now that we’ve mapped the clusters surrounding the lakes, I think it adds another point of validation to that theory.
The largest cluster of missing people fitting our profile is Yosemite National park. A series of clusters continue north through the Sierra’s and then continue further north to the Cascades. All of these clusters are reasonably close to the Pacific Ocean.
Many of the clusters along the eastern United States are close to the Appalachian Trail. There are a total of 58 clusters of missing people now established in North America.
6. What case or cases would you like to share with us from this book? That you personally have found very weird and haunting.
Here is a very unusual case directly from the latest book.
Missing: 04/29/01-11:30 a.m., Newton County, AR
Age at disappearance: 6 years
Some of you may remember the name and location of this event as it was highlighted in a Dateline NBC segment. There are some very unusual claims made by this victim that could be related to a historical event in that same area.
On April 29, 2001, Haley Zega was with her grandparents, Jay and Joyce Hale. The group had decided to travel to the Upper Buffalo Wilderness Area thirty miles southeast of Harrison. If an area has the classification of a “wilderness area,” this means there can be no bicycles or motor-driven vehicles of any type inside the area. This region is very remote and wild.
At approximately 11:30 a.m., Haley asked her grandparents if they could hike to a nearby waterfall. They said no, and she got very upset. The adults continued to slowly walk down the trail, and Haley fell farther behind. After a short period of time, the grandparents lost sight of the girl and turned back to find her. Jay and Joyce searched for ninety minutes and continually yelled for the girl. They heard nothing and could not locate Haley. The pair now turned back toward the parking lot to seek additional assistance.
The Newton County sheriff responded along with the park service, fire departments, National Guard, and a slew of two hundred volunteers. Helicopters with FLIR took to the sky, and other volunteers were on horseback and mules. There were up to eight teams of Bloodhounds attempting to track the girl. One team of dogs tracked a scent to near a roadway and stopped. This action was interpreted by searchers to mean Haley may have been picked up by a vehicle. At the end of two full days of searching, nothing was found.
Fifty-one hours after Haley had vanished, Lytle James and William Villines (not part of the formal search) were riding mules and looking for the girl. The pair was two miles from where Haley was last seen when they observed her sitting next to a brook with her feet hanging in the water. Lytle said the girl appeared tired or groggy and had scratches on her face, legs, and arms but appeared otherwise in good condition. She was brought back to the searchers and later transferred to a medical center for observation.
After Haley recovered her strength, she was questioned about her journey. She told her parents that the first night she slept on top of a bluff. This was puzzling because two helicopters with FLIR were hovering above that location and never saw her. The second night she said that she slept in a cave. She also stated that she had tried to climb steep, boulder-strewn hills and fell back into the water a few times. The girl then explained that she had assistance along the way from another girl. Here is a partial transcript from her Dateline NBC interview with Rob Stafford.
Haley: The first moment I was lost I met her and then after I was found she went away.
Stafford: She was an imaginary friend who Haley says showed up just when she needed help the most.
Haley: Her name was Alicia. She was four years old.
Stafford: What’s she look like?
Haley: She had black hair and brown eyes.
Stafford: What did you talk about?
Haley: We sang songs and told jokes.
Stafford: What else did Alicia do?
Haley: She helped me get down a hill.
Stafford: A steep hill? How did she do that?
Haley: She got in front of me and made sure I didn’t fall.
Stafford goes on to state that this may be a little girl’s imagination, or was it something else? He says that there is a strange twist to the story. As it turns out, twenty-three years prior to this event, another little girl disappeared in this same spot and was found dead. Stafford states that this girl was almost four years old and her middle name was not Alicia, but Alana.
I’ve put this story in the book for multiple reasons. I do believe that something unusual happened to Haley when she was alone in the woods. The fact that another girl disappeared in the same spot does not surprise me. I have been tracking incidents where the person who is the last in line on a trail vanishes, as was the case in this story.
Many of the searchers on this rescue publicly questioned how a six-year-old girl could’ve maneuvered around the dangerous terrain where she vanished. There are many steep valleys and cliffs throughout the region.
Many of the people I have written about were in the presence of relatives when they vanished. Haley was with her grandparents when she went missing.
The two searchers who located Haley refused the reward and asked that it be donated to charity, which it was.
7. Has there been any changes regarding the laws and procedures or with National Parks to help these missing people since your journey of helping them personally? What can we do to help?
There have been no changes. The NPS has completely ignored the missing person issue and refused to respond. They still want $1.4 million dollars for a list of missing people inside their system and $34,000 for a list of missing people from Yosemite National Park.
While the NPS has been ignoring the issue of missing people, we have been building our own database of the missing. With the assistance of a Microsoft engineer, we have placed the missing we have studied in a software system that allows us to track and organize them in different ways. We have offered this to NPS and they ignored us. I believe their position is strategic. If they had the database in their possession, they couldn’t ignore the issue and it would be discoverable under an FOIA request.
I have personally advised NPS that we would purchase them a clipboard for each of their 183 locations. We would supply graph paper and have them divide the paper into, Name, Date, age, sex, location, time, circumstances, recovered, still outstanding. This would be the NPS onsite tracking method of missing people at each location. Every month, NPS locations are required to submit a report on major park incidents. They could submit the missing person report at that time. An individual at NPS headquarters would log the missing person into a laptop and easily track it. I recently gave an interview on Veritas Radio networks with Mel Fabregas. Mel made a public statement that he would purchase the NPS the laptop if they’d start tracking missing people, still no response from the parks.
Until the public pressure upon NPS is to the point that it makes them uncomfortable, I cannot see them changing their policy.
8. What are you up to next projects or books? Also what is your website link? Thank you for the interview.
We are still working to understand the complexity of the missing person issue. There has been progress made and readers of the books can see that progression as the profile and circumstances of the cases have evolved.
You can follow current cases and purchase the books at : www.canammissing.com