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8 Unsolved Cases of Famous People Who Vanished without a Trace


Hundreds of thousands of regular people disappear every year around the world, many of them never to be found. Despite their fame and the public’s general attention, celebrities also periodically pop up on the missing people lists and do not always come back.

Here are some of the unsolved cases of famous people who vanished without a trace.

1. Richey Edwards

One of the most interesting personalities of the Britpop era, Richey Edwards, guitarist for the Manic Street Preachers, was reported missing on February 1, 1995, when the band was going on tour. Police later found Edwards’ car near the Severn Bridge. Presumably, the man committed suicide, but the body was never found. The musician was officially declared dead in 2008.

2. Jim Sullivan

Musician Jim Sullivan went missing in 1975. The man checked into a hotel, left his things there, got into a car, and drove away. No explanations, no nothing. No one saw Sullivan after that. Later, his car was found in the desert in New Mexico, but the musician himself was never found.

3. Joe Pichler

Joe Pichler is best known for his role as Brennan Newton in Beethoven 4 and 5. All was going well until 2006, when the young actor went missing. Joe’s friends last saw him on January 5, and four days later, his car was discovered abandoned near Seattle. The police never found the body. However, there was a note with a request to give all his belongings to Pichler’s younger brother, which made the detectives think that the guy had committed suicide.

4. Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

The author of The Little Prince, writer, poet, and professional pilot Antoine de Saint-Exupéry disappeared on July 31, 1944. His plane went on a night reconnaissance flight from the airfield on the island of Corsica and was never to be seen again. In 1998, a local sailor found a bracelet belonging to the writer in the coastal waters of Marseille. Two years later, in 2000, diver Luc Wanrel discovered the plane wreckage, which later stirred a lot of new assumptions – from a technical malfunction to the writer’s suicide. However, Exupery’s remains were never found, so his disappearance remains a mystery.

5. Michael Rockefeller

John Rockefeller’s great-grandson, Michael, dreamed of becoming an anthropologist since childhood, spending all his free time at the anthropology institute funded by his father. After graduating, in the fall of 1961, Michael went on an expedition to New Guinea. Having learned that the local cannibal tribe has unique artifacts, Michael, despite being warned about the danger, decided to pay the cannibals a visit. The crew sailed down the river on a boat overloaded with trophies and food supplies, and the engine suddenly stopped. Soon after, the boat capsized, and Rockefeller decided to swim to the shore for help. That was the last time anyone’s ever seen him.

6. Glenn Miller

A famous musician, Glen Miller, went missing during World War II. After joining the military, he led the Air Force Orchestra. In December 1944, Glenn and his musicians flew from England to France, but the plane did not reach its destination. According to the most popular version, the plane was shot down by a British bomber when it dropped unspent ammunition into the sea and fell into the English Channel. Since no bodies have been recovered, Miller and his band are still listed as missing to this day.

7. Rudolf Diesel

The mastermind behind the diesel engine, Rudolf Diesel, disappeared on September 29, 1913, from a cruise ship sailing from Antwerp to London. After spending the evening at the restaurant, Diesel went to his cabin and asked the steward to wake him up at 6:15 sharp. When the cabin was opened, they found his clothes and pocket watch on the bed, as if Diesel was about to go to sleep. Shortly after, his hat and cloak were discovered on deck, which meant he could have fallen overboard or many he was hushed. Those are the two running theories, but despite all the assumptions and conjectures, Diesel’s death still remains a mystery.

8. Sean Flynn

For a long time, Sean Flynn was forced to exist in the shadow of his father, the famous actor Errol Flynn. Eventually, he decided to break the family curse and become a photojournalist. His first and, unfortunately, last business trip was to Vietnam during the war. In early April 1970, Flynn and his colleague went to Cambodia, but at one of the checkpoints, they were stopped by the local militia and executed a year later. Or at least that’s the assumption, as the bodies were never recovered. Although Sean was never found, he was declared dead thirteen years after his disappearance in 1984.