Dennis Lee Reynolds
Reynolds, approximately 1978
Date reported missing : 02/04/1978
Missing location (approx) :
Missing classification : Endangered Missing
Gender : Male
Age at the time of disappearance: 24 years old
Height / Weight : 6'0 - 6'2, 160 -180 pounds
Description, clothing, jewerly and more : A denim jacket and blue jeans.
Distinguishing characteristics, birthmarks, tattoos
: Caucasian male. Brown hair, blue eyes. Reynolds has a cleft palate. He wears eyeglasses.
Information on the case from local sources, may or may not be correct : Reynolds was last seen in Litchfield, Illinois on February 4, 1978. He disappeared during a catastrophic blizzard that struck the area during the second-worst winter in the recorded history of Illinois, with 100-mile-per-hour wind gusts and a wind chill at sixty degrees below zero.
Because of the severe weather, airports, businesses and schools throughout central Illinois were closed indefinitely, mail service stopped, and police, ambulance and fire services were often unable to reach people in need of help. The National Guard was called in to assist with the situation. 24 people in Illinois died inside their stranded vehicles, and three men, Reynolds included, disappeared.
On the day he went missing, snow began falling at 2:00 p.m. and by evening temperatures were below zero. Reynolds and his best friend went to a bar. Afterwards, Reynolds took his friend home and said he was going to go visit his girlfriend. He has never been heard from again.
His girlfriend was not at home that night. After his disappearance, Reynolds's car was found abandoned in a snow-filled ditch across the street from his girlfriend's house, its doors locked, its windows broken. Reynolds's jacket was still inside it. He had apparently tried to walk to a nearby residence, about 100 feet away, to get help.
Prior to his disappearance, Reynolds had been in a dispute with the two brothers of a girl he dated. At one point, about six months before he went missing, Reynolds was in a fight with the brothers and they beat him with a baseball bat and he had to be hospitalized for his injuries. The brothers reportedly threatened to kill Reynolds if he went near their sister again. One of them passed a polygraph about his case, but the second brother, and the girlfriend, refused to take one.
Reynolds drank alcohol and was involved with drugs at the time of his disappearance, but his family stated he was close to them and they don't believe he would have simply walked away, particularly during the severe weather. His case remains unsolved.
Other information and links : ncy
Litchfield Police Department
September 2021 updates and sources
A missing person is a person who has disappeared and whose status as alive or dead cannot be confirmed as their location and condition are not known. A person may go missing through a voluntary disappearance, or else due to an accident, crime, death in a location where they cannot be found (such as at sea), or many other reasons. In most parts of the world, a missing person will usually be found quickly. While criminal abductions are some of the most widely reported missing person cases, these account for only 2–5% of missing children in Europe.
By contrast, some missing person cases remain unresolved for many years. Laws related to these cases are often complex since, in many jurisdictions, relatives and third parties may not deal with a person's assets until their death is considered proven by law and a formal death certificate issued. The situation, uncertainties, and lack of closure or a funeral resulting when a person goes missing may be extremely painful with long-lasting effects on family and friends.
Several organizations seek to connect, share best practices, and disseminate information and imAge at the time of disappearance: s of missing children to improve the effectiveness of missing children investigations, including the International Commission on Missing Persons, the International Centre for Missing & Exploited Children (ICMEC), as well as national organizations, including the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children in the US, Missing People in the UK, Child Focus in Belgium, and The Smile of the Child in Greece.
The Decatur Herald
October 12, 2004. November 15, 2019; .
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