HARTVILLE, Mo. To the Wright County Sheriff's Office, the disappearance is a perplexing mystery.
49 year-old Varian Sawyers, 5-ft. 6 and 230 pounds with blond hair, was last seen on January 22nd leaving a cousin's house just off Highway 5 north of Hartville heading to his parents house where he lived less than a half-mile away.
But he never showed up and no one has heard from him since. He was described as being intoxicated and depressed at the time of his disappearance.
"That's what we were originally told," said Wright Co. Sheriff Glenn Adler. "Then another family member came in and said he wasn't intoxicated and no he wasn't depressed. I don't know either way. If he was depressed he could go out and harm himself or maybe he just wanted to get away and be by himself for a while. But he's well known around here. If he was seen, somebody would have called in."
Sawyers has been placed on the national missing persons registry, and a search of the heavily rural area by family, friends and law enforcement has so far turned up nothing.
"It's kinda hard, we gotta lot of woods out there," Adler said. "Did he get in and take off with somebody he knew or somebody kidnap him? Or is he just off? I really don't know."
What they do know is that nobody around town has seen him for 19 days, and authorities admit that the longer the mystery goes on, the less likely it is to have a good ending.
"Surely if he's alive he ought to be thinking his family is worried about him," Adler said. "The longer it gets, it makes you start switching to something's happened to him by somebody or something himself."
The sheriff's office is looking for more information on this case so if you can provide any help, please call them at 417-741-7575.