A 19-year-old college student left an Indiana campus nearly three decades ago to get a snack. After leaving March 29, 1993, she has never been seen or heard from again as police found only her bloodied clothing in a park the day after.
Tricia Reitler would be 48 today. Instead, questions continue to linger after she was last seen on the campus of Indiana Wesleyan University in Marion, Indiana.
“We had her for 19 years. She’s been missing for 29 years, that’s basically a lifetime,” Garry Reitler, Tricia’s father, told Fox 59 in March 2022.
It was the middle of the night of March 29, 1993, when Garry and Donna Reitler got a phone call in which detectives told them that their daughter was missing. She had taken a break from writing a term paper and walked to a store about half a mile from her dorm, Fox 59 reported.
“At that time, we knew something was really wrong,” Garry Reitler said."... I think early on, I honestly felt like we would find her, that this case would be solved."
A massive manhunt and hours of investigating ensued to no avail. The case is still open and no arrested have been made.
"I think that's one of the frustrating things, there's no direct evidence pointing to any one suspect" Garry Reitler told Cleveland 19 in 2018.
According to Cleveland 19, Donald Greiner was considered a person of interest in 1999. However, he was later convicted of abducting and raping another girl, not Tricia Reitler. Larry Hall, who a suspect at one time, is also in prison for a separate crime.
"Every morning I come down and I say good morning to her picture if not vocally I do it in my head," Donna Reitler told Cleveland 19.
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Fox 59 reported that Garry and Donna Reitler believe their daughter is dead. Still, they'd like to finally find out what took place.
“I know there is somebody out there that has the answers that we desperately seek,” Donna Reitler told Fox 59.
Police have refused to call Reitler's disappearance a cold case, Fox 59 reported. Authorities say they've received tips as recently as last fall, though nothing has been concrete enough to solve the case.
“You hear about these kinds of cases but when they actually happen close to home a lot of people hold onto that feeling,” Timothy Pauley, coordinator with Grant County Crime Stoppers, told Fox 59.
Donna Reitler reiterated that the family is simply looking for answered to put their minds at ease.
"We’re not looking for revenge. We’re beyond that. We just want to bring her home. It would just mean so much to all of us,” she told Fox 59.
Nonetheless, the couple is left waiting for answers nearly three decades later.
"Somebody has the answer, we know that. It's a nightmare that we've lived with for 25 years. It's gonna take just one thing to open it up you know and that's what we pray for every day," Donna Reitler told Cleveland 19.
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