It's been one year ago today since Kris Fowler was last seen as he was making his way along the Pacific Crest Trail.
The last confirmed sighting of Fowler, a Wright State graduate who grew up in Beavercreek, was on Oct. 12, 2016. He had already hiked about 2,000 miles before stopping at a convenience store at a trail head near White Pass, Wash.
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The 34-year-old experienced hiker tried to call his dad that day, according to phone records, but the call didn't get through, according to Kris' step-mother Sally Fowler.
His dad, Mike Fowler, a government contractor at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, died in June, not knowing what happened to his son, Sally said.
It's been a heartbreaking, difficult year for Sally, who maintains hope that she'll eventually find out what happened to Kris. She has heard from hundreds of people who met Kris on the trail.
A truck driver who gave Kris and another hiker a ride that October found a video on his phone where he inadvertently recorded Kris sitting in the passenger seat as the other hiker sings and plays guitar in the back seat.
That’s one of several videos of Kris posted on the Bring Kris Fowler/Sherpa Home Facebook page, which continues to be an active social media site with 6,625 people following the page.
Sherpa was Kris Fowler’s nickname on the trail.
"People go missing out there all the time," she said. "When a male adult goes missing, the first thing you get is, 'well they must not want to be found.' It takes some time to actually get them to start searching."
Authorities in Yakima and Kittitas counties in Washington now regularly stay in touch with Sally. Search efforts resumed within the past two weeks after a hiker reported seeing a tarp and other gear strewn along the trail that the hiker believed was Kris Fowler's.
There's now a $10,000 reward being offered for information leading to Kris Fowler's whereabouts.
If you can help investigators, contact Yakima County sheriff Sgt. Randy Briscoe at (509) 574-2535 or the Kittitas County Sheriff’s Office at (509) 962-7525.
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