Details of Disappearance Strege was last seen at his workplace, Dodge Correctional Institution, in the vicinity of West Lincoln Street in Waupun, Wisconsin, on October 2, 2002. He was employed as a prison guard there, and had been for 25 years.
Strege left work and has never been seen again. He was supposed to participate in a golf tournament on the weekend of October 5-6 and was looking forward to it, but he never showed up. He is a very good amateur golfer, reportedly one of the best in Wisconsin. Strege was supposed to return to work on October 8 but did not and did not call his boss to say why.
Strege's father went to his apartment on October 11 to find out why his son wasn't answering the phone. He found the apartment unlocked with all of Strege's personal belongings, including his cellular phone, wallet, identification, car keys, and gulf clubs, left behind. The lights were on and the television was on and tuned into the Golf Channel.
There were no signs that a struggle had occurred in the residence. Strege's car and his motorcycle were in the apartment garage. The only thing missing from the apartment was his gun.
Extensive searches of the Waupun area have turned up no clues as to Strege's whereabouts. There has been no activity on his bank accounts since his disappearance. He is described as a quiet, focused man who is divorced and has no children.
Strege was having personal problems at the time of his disappearance; he had been arrested for drunk driving for the fourth time and feared losing his job because of it.
Strege disappeared at about the same time an inmate at Dodge, Thomas Deering, escaped from the prison. Another guard was disciplined in connection with the incident. Deering's escape is not thought to have anything to do with Strege's disappearance, however.
Strege's father stated his son was never the same after a prison riot in 1983. He was held hostage by inmates who tortured him and threatened to set him on fire. Strege was reportedly traumatized by the incident, but it's unclear what, if anything, it had to do with his disappearance nearly twenty years later.
Investigators are not sure if Strege met with foul play, committed suicide, or simply moved away without telling anyone. Some of his friends theorize that he shot himself and his body is in the Horicon Marsh where he often hunted. Others have suggested that he went to Horicon Marsh to check his deer stand but became injured and died there.
There is no evidence to substantiate these or any other theories. Strege's case remains unsolved.
- Waupun Police Department
Updated 1 time since October 12, 2004. Last updated October 18, 2008; details of disappearance updated.