When a young person disappears, the pain that person's parents suffer can be heartbreaking. Such is the case with Lee Cutler, who disappeared on October 20, 2007. His mother has never stopped searching for answers.
|Lee Cutler's mother|
Lee Sterling Cutler was a high school senior at Stevenson High School in Lincolnshire, Illinois. On the evening before his disappearance, he had dinner with friends and his mom in celebration of a friend's 18th birthday. Afterward, he asked his mom if he could sleep over at a friend's house. His goodbye hug was, as his mom said, "Longer than usual."
The next morning, Lee was scheduled to work his job at the mall. When his mother didn't hear from him, she stopped by his store to see him. The manager said he never showed up for work.
Friends initially weren't concerned, since Lee was known to go off on his own to think and meditate. But the next day, his locked car was found approximately 200 miles from his home at a rest stop. Lee loved hiking and camping and had visited this location before.
|Where Lee's car was found. Source: Disappeared, Discovery I.D.|
In the days that followed, it came out that he'd suffered from anxiety and had been suicidal in the past. The night before his disappearance, he sent text messages stating that his thoughts of suicide were resurfacing.
Local police began a search of the area where Lee's car was found. They soon discovered a makeshift campsite, filled with belongings that were identified as Lee's. There was a box of cold medicine, some Advil P.M., and letters to his parents and girlfriend. Although the notes didn't specifically mention suicide, the letter to his mom stated, "finally, I'll get to sleep." He apologized for being a coward. The letter was tucked into a paperback copy of Into the Wild, a book about a man who sought adventure in the wilderness and eventually died.
|Campsite. Source: Disappeared on Discovery I.D.|
Lee's body was never found, but his wallet and car keys were in the nearby river. His family and friends believe he still might be missing and authorities think if he was in that immediate area, they would have found him.
Do you believe Lee committed suicide? Or could he still be out there somewhere? Was it murder?