Details of Disappearance Travis was last seen by his father at about 10:30 a.m. on March 10, 1991. His father was repairing some chainsaws near their cabin in Riverside, California. Travis wandered into some bushes to relieve himself. When he did not return after ten minutes, his father went looking for him. He could not find him anywhere. Travis has never been heard from again.
The cabin was located in a rural, mountainous area. Temperatures dipped below the freezing level in the week following Travis's disappearance. Rescue workers and helicopters with infrared technology searched the terrain, but located no evidence indicating the child's whereabouts. After four days of searching, during which time there was a storm with snow, hail, and rain, authorities called off the search and declared that he could not have survived the weather conditions.
The only possible evidence located in the mountains were shoe prints thought to belong to Travis, half a mile from where he was last seen. There were also marks consistent with sliding or dragging, and animal tracks. The tracks were originally thought to be from a mountain lion, but investigators later stated that they probably belonged to a large dog.
The possibility of abduction was also looked into. Several people reported having seen a boy matching Travis's description, but these sightings were never confirmed. His case is similar to that of Laura Bradbury, also three years old, who disappeared from Joshua Tree National Park in 1984. Some bone fragments were discovered in 1986 near the site of Bradbury's disappearance and were identified as hers in 1990.
Travis's parents both took polygraphs and were ruled out as suspects in their son's case. They have since divorced. Travis has never been located. His family hopes that he was abducted by someone who wanted to raise a child; if this is the case, he may not know he is a missing child.
He resided in La Quinta, California at the time of his disappearance, and was noted for his outgoing personality. His case remains unsolved.
- Riverside County Sheriff's Department
Updated 3 times since October 12, 2004. Last updated August 23, 2014; age-progression updated.