Details of Disappearance Ellabeth was last seen at her home the 300 block of north Indiana Avenue in in Sioux Falls, South Dakota on the evening of March 6, 1974. She was estranged from her husband, Gene Lodermeier, at the time, and they were in the process of a divorce. It was her co-workers who told him she hadn't shown up for work and they couldn't find her.
Gene went to Ellabeth's residence and found a loaf of bread rising in the kitchen, flour spilled on the floor, and a fresh pizza with one piece missing. Her car was parked in the driveway, the house was locked and nothing was missing except her coat and purse. She has never been heard from again.
Later in 1974, Ellabeth's credit cards were found in a women's bathrooom at the Canadian National Railway in Dauphin, Manitoba, Canada. This is nearly a ten-hour drive north of Sioux Falls, and authorities could find no sign that Ellabeth had ever been there.
In 1992, eighteen years after her disappearance, her purse, wallet and checkbook were found on the banks of the Big Sioux River near Highway 42 and south Riverview Avenue, east of Sioux Falls.
Foul play is suspected. Gene, who was the last person to see her, is considered a person of interest. He died in 2013 and Ellabeth's parents are also dead, but her brother and sister are still alive.
Prior to Ellabeth's disappearance, the Lodermeiers had traveled throughout the midwest, including all over South Dakota and in northwest Iowa and southwest Minnesota. Her case remains unsolved and foul play is suspected.
- Sioux Falls Police Department
Updated 4 times since October 12, 2004. Last updated March 10, 2016; name corrected, two pictures added, distinguishing characteristics, clothing/jewelry description and details of disappearance updated.