She Disappeared After Hanging With Friends. There's No Trace Of Her More Than Three Decades Later

Tracy Kroh
Source: National Center for Missing and Exploited Children; MEGA

Tracy Kroh.

Aug. 30 2022, Published 2:24 p.m. ET

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A 17-year-old mysteriously disappeared from a Pennsylvania plaza in 1989. Now, 33 years later, there's still no sign of her.

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Tracy Kroh, of Halifax, Pennsylvania, was last seen Aug. 5, 1989, at the square in Millersburg, Pennsylvania, where teenagers were hanging out, according to WGAL. She would be 50 years old today.

"That night we went to our cars after we closed here, and they were hanging out over here on the corner with a bunch of kids," Irene Lau told WGAL.

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Lau said she didn't know Kroh very well but was surprised when she learned what was going on.

"I came to work the next morning and her car was sitting over here on the corner and all the police were all around it," she told WGAL.

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Police continue to investigate the disappearance. According to Fox 43, in 2019, police were seen using excavation equipment on a property in the 100 block of Mountain House Road in Jackson Township. The property is approximately 10 miles from where Kroh was last seen.

Mark Warfel, 89, owns the property and used to run a auto body shop there before retiring. He told Fox 43 in 2019 that he wasn't concerned with police searching the property.

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“I said, 'What are you digging for?' and they said they thought maybe the remains of Tracy Kroh might be there and I said, 'Well you can dig all that you want but you aren’t going to find anything,'” Warfel said at the time.

Warfel has been in jail since September 2019 on unrelated charges, and he has never been named as a suspect in Kroh's disappearance.

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“I knew him from way, way, way back when, when he had the body shop out there,” said Halifax resident Chuck Bonawitz, adding that he had no reason to be suspicious of Warfel. “I knew him years and years ago, and we all change a little bit. You know how that works.”

Missing Persons

There was speculation early on that perhaps Kroh had run away. However, her mother didn't believe that was the case.

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"I think something happened. I mean, like, someone took her," her mother said previously.

"We have no idea what we're dealing with here. We just have no idea on the disappearance," then-Millersburg Police Chief Kenneth Rose said in 1989, according to WGAL.

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In 1993, state police found items from Kroh's wallet, including a portion of her driver's license next to a Dauphin County creek.

In 2001, police believed they might be getting closer to solving the case.

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"We believe Tracy Kroh's disappearance is tied closely to someone she knew," then-District Attorney Ed Marsico said.

WGAL reported that investigators say Matthew Allen Webster's Dauphin County property was searched in 2016 after he allegedly told a friend he was involved in Kroh's disappearance. He allegedly said, "It was supposed to be just a rape and done but then it turned out to be a lot more than that."

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However, Webster has never been charged.

Still, police are holding out hope that they can finally solve the missing persons case.

"There is an element of time passing and you want to bring closure to a family. That's certainly there, but you want to do things correctly," Fran Chardo, who's been with the Dauphin County District Attorney's Office for nearly three decades, told WGAL.


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