Reading progress update: I've read 171 out of 367 pages.

Missing 411-Western United States & Canada: Unexplained Disappearances of North Americans that have never been solved - David Paulides

We've finally reached the section of the book based on the area where I grew up as a kid. I remember a few of the cases from when they happened.


Specifically, I remember the disappearance of David Gonzalez, which the book misspells as Gonzales, a nine-year-old who vanished from a campsite in 2004. His missing posters were inescapable for months afterwards. The book describes the basic situation: the kid wanted to grab some cookies from the car (which was about fifty feet away from his family's camp), and vanished. The search to find him was one of the largest in the county's history at the time, but to no avail. The body was found nearby the location a year later, although the parents were convinced that he was abducted, and the killer dumped the body after the hoopla died down. 


The book neglects to mention why the parents thought so: namely a pickup truck left the campsite at almost the same time as the disappearance. Six years later, a man in a dark Ford tried to abduct my then nine-year-old cousin from the front yard while I was babysitting him. Coincidence? Probably. 


The official explanation for David Gonzalez disappearance--which, I might add, is also missing from MISSING 411--is that a mountain lion killed the boy, as one had been treed in the area not too long after the disappearance, and the remains had been eaten by wildlife when they were found. Mountain lions are very dangerous and very effective predators, and they can kill a vulnerable child like David before there's time to react. Whichever the case may be, my sincere condolences to the family nonetheless.