William Dale Cunningham

Cunningham, circa 1981

  • Missing Since 09/21/1981
  • Missing From Bloomington, Indiana
  • Classification Endangered Missing
  • Sex Male
  • Race White
  • Date of Birth 04/06/1954 (70)
  • Age 27 years old
  • Height and Weight 5'9 - 6'0, 240 pounds
  • Associated Vehicle(s) Black and silver 1978 Lincoln Continental with the Indiana license plate number 53A5926 (accounted for)
  • Distinguishing Characteristics Caucasian male. Sandy brown hair, gray eyes. Cunningham had a beard at the time of his disappearance.

Details of Disappearance

Cunningham left Bloomington, Indiana alone on September 18, 1981, to visit friends in South Bend, Indiana. He was carrying between $30,000 and $40,000 in cash at the time. He was last heard from when he made a phone call from Pierceton, Indiana on September 21. He has never been heard from again.

Several weeks later, his black and silver 1978 Lincoln Continental with the Indiana license plate number 53A5926 was found unlocked and abandoned in a grocery store parking lot in Fort Wayne, Indiana. It sat in the parking lot for a month before it was towed. The citizens band radio and radar detector had been taken from it. Investigators believe the vehicle had been stolen and the thieves left it where it was found.

Police believe Cunningham was a dealer of marijuana, hashish and cocaine in the South Bend area, which is why he had so much cash when he disappeared.  He and another man owned a drive-in restaurant, the Bloomington A&W Drive-In in the 600 block of north College Avenue.

Cunningham's business partner dropped out of sight after Cunningham's disappearance. Police were seeking him for questioning, but they were unable to locate him. It's unknown whether he ever resurfaced.

Investigators believe Cunningham may have been the victim of a homicide. His disappearance remains unsolved.

Investigating Agency

  • Indiana State Police 574-546-4900

Updated 2 times since October 12, 2004. Last updated April 17, 2018; date of birth added.