TEXAS COUNTY, Mo. – Deputies in Texas County are still investigating after a man disappeared without a trace in late January.
58-year-old John Dudding was last known to be at his home in the southeastern part of the county.
Sheriff Scott Lindsey said now, nearly two months later, this remains an active investigation.
“We conducted a couple of ground searches with a lot of resources out there,” he said. “The ground searches were unsuccessful. We really didn’t turn up any information on those.”
Lindsey said there’s not a lot of informational updates to pass along right now.
However, investigators are continuing to search for answers.
“We’re two months into this,” Lindsey said. “I don’t think it’s fair to speculate on what happened. I think we just need to be open to all the possibilities.”
Dudding’s son, Blaise, said a lot of the situation doesn’t make sense.
Blaise said when a family friend went to check on John, they discovered his truck door wide open and a shower running inside. However, no one was there.
“He has a special backpack he takes with him absolutely everywhere that just has a set of clothes in there, just in case he decides to stay the night somewhere else,” Blaise explained. “That was still there with all those clothes.”
Blaise is a Webster County Sheriff’s deputy.
He’s used to helping others go through hard times.
Now, he said he’s learning a lesson in empathy he can take back to his job as he searches for his dad.
“Me and my dad are as close as a father and son probably could be,” Blaise said. “It kind of makes me feel like I can be able to help people a little bit more.”
While Blaise is in this line of work, he said he’s letting Texas County investigators do their jobs.
“Texas County is doing an amazing job,” he said. “They’re doing their best and there is nothing more that I would do that they haven’t.”
Sheriff Lindsey said you never know when something can break a case.
He urges anyone with information on John’s whereabouts to come forward.