Details of Disappearance
Mark was last seen at approximately 4:00 p.m. near his family's home on Sunray Road in rural Del Haven, New Jersey on November 25, 1991. His mother allowed him to observe firefighters extinguishing a small brush fire a quarter of a mile from their house.
Mark's mother left the residence to run an errand that would have normally taken five minutes, but she became delayed and as a result, she did not get home until 40 minutes had passed. Mark had disappeared by the time she returned home; his mother assumed he was with neighborhood children at the time.
Mark has not been heard from again. He was reported missing at 5:00 p.m. that evening. The afternoon of his disappearance, traffic was rerouted past his house.
There are unconfirmed witness reports that Mark was seen at a local park entrance with an unidentified child around 3:40 p.m. the day he vanished. The identity of the girl has never been determined.
She was about nine or ten years old in 1991 and had dishwater-blonde hair. She was about four feet tall, weighed approximately 70 to 75 pounds and was wearing a three-quarter length dark blue ski parka with a hunter-orange stripe on the back. Authorities believe the girl could have important information about Mark's disappearance. A sketch of the girl is posted with this case summary.
Mark was possibly sighted with two other males on the day of his disappearance. One is described as between 30 and 35 years old, about 5'8 - 5'9 tall and 150 pounds. He had dark reddish-brown hair in a ponytail, and a generally scruffy, unkempt appearance. A sketch of this man is posted with this case summary. There is no sketch or description for the other man.
Investigators did locate Mark's left shoe, a hand-me-down L.A. Gear sneaker, at Sunray Beach approximately 75 yards from the family's home later in the day of his disappearance. His footprints were also seen above the tide line, but these were the only solid clues ever found.
Mark lived with his mother and older brother at the time he disappeared, and was a sixth-grader at Cape May County Alternative Middle School.
Thomas Butcavage Jr. was named as a person of interest in Mark's disappearance in 1993. He resembles the sketch of the man Mark may have been seen with. In 1993, a male prostitute approached the police and said Butcavage, one of his regular clients, had shown him a video of himself having sex with a young boy who resembled Mark. The boy was handcuffed, gagged and appeared frightened.
The prostitute said he asked Butcavage if the boy was Mark Himebaugh, and Butcavage said he was. He also said he'd deliberately planted Mark's sneaker on the beach to confuse the investigation.
Butcavage has never been charged in Mark's case, but he has been imprisoned multiple times for drug offenses and for sex with underage males. In 2015, authorities asked anyone who knew Butcavage in the late 1980s and early 1990s to contact them.
Investigators believe Mark was abducted by a stranger. His case is unsolved.