Marion County man still missing over a month later
Marion County Deputies say they have exhausted all the leads in the search for a missing local man. Wesley Ridge, 36 years old, disappeared more than a month ago.
The Ridge family says they are now looking at this situation as a recovery, no longer a rescue. The family has increased the reward for information from $3,500 to $15,000 in hopes that someone knows where Wesley Ridge's body might be.
Chris Ridge, Wesley Ridge's first cousin, says he wants closure.
“We’ve heard several stories; we don't have any concrete information. We are just reaching out to anyone who would have any information that would help us locate Wesley,” said Ridge. “Wesley was a loving young man. He loved his family, he loved his daughter. Everybody who met him liked him. He was just overall a good guy."
Marion County Sheriff Bo Burnett says Wesley Ridge left his girlfriend's house on March 8th and got into a car with a co-worker.
He’s been missing since that time. Investigators interviewed the coworker who picked Ridge up.
The coworker told investigators they went for a short ride, and then he dropped Ridge off at Ronnie’s Red Eye Tavern in Jasper.
That would be the last time the coworker saw him.
Sheriff Burnett said “I really get concerned. Usually with these cases we find them somewhere between a day or two, but as time goes by it makes me concerned about things."
The sheriff says they've conducted several searches and interviews, and he said investigators have done all they can.
“We’ve done some on Etna Mountain, of course those are large rural areas and they are hard to search. at one point we had 45 to 50 people searching and we had information that he may be in those areas but we still didn't find anything,” Sheriff Burnett said.
Chris Ridge says if you know where his cousin is please come forward.
“He’s never gone more than two days without calling his parents ever and the fact that hasn't happened is really disturbing to us,” said Ridge.
If you have any information that can help investigators call the Marion County Sheriff's Department 423-942-5667.