Missing Persons Week – 1989 disappearance of Illawarra man, Grant Rodgers

As Missing Persons Week continues, police are re-appealing for information into the disappearance of an Illawarra man more than three decades ago.

Grant Rodgers, then aged 28, was last seen leaving his home in Albion Park about 7am on Thursday 26 October 1989.

Officers from Lake Illawarra Police District were notified when he failed to arrive at his workplace in Thirroul later that day.

Grant’s 4WD was found at Mount Kembla the following day, on Friday 27 October 1989.

He has never been seen or heard from since.

At the time of his disappearance, Mr Rodgers was described as being of Caucasian appearance, about 180cm tall, with brown eyes, brown hair and a moustache. He also had a large scar on the left side of his back.

As investigations continue, NSW Police, together with Mr Rodgers’ family, are appealing for anyone who may have information about his disappearance to come forward.

Minister for Police and Emergency Services, David Elliott, urged anyone with information about the disappearance of Grant Rodgers to come forward to police.

“Grant was just a young man when he disappeared more than 30 years ago. He was on his way to work, and on a normal day would have come home to his loved ones,” Mr Elliott said.

“As we commemorate Missing Persons Week this year, it is important to acknowledge the devastating impacts for the people left behind when someone disappears.

“His family deserves to know the truth about why Grant disappeared without a trace all those years ago,” Mr Elliott said.

Lake Illawarra Police District’s Detective Senior Sergeant Clem Scott said now is the time for anyone who knows how and why Grant disappeared, to come forward.

“Someone somewhere must know what happened to Grant. His family deserves answers, and even the smallest of clues could hold the key to finding out what happened,” Det Snr Sgt Scott said.

“Grant’s family has been living with unanswered questions for more than three decades and deserves to know what happened to their much-loved son and brother,” he said.

Grant’s sister, Jane Neville, said it is difficult for people to imagine how horrible it is for someone you love to disappear for a day, let alone 32 years.

“There has never been a clear reason why Grant went missing, or any productive lead to find him,” Mrs Neville said.

“Police and authorities, family, friends and strangers have given us strong support, but he’s still missing. It’s getting hard to believe that he is still alive after all this time.

“Any information – not matter how small you may think it is, could be the missing piece to the puzzle. There must be someone out there who knows something. If there is, please help,” Mrs Neville said.

Anyone with information about Mr Rodger’s disappearance is urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

Information is treated in strict confidence. The community is reminded not to report crime via NSW Police social media pages.

Missing Persons Week is an annual national campaign to raise awareness of the issues and impacts surrounding missing persons and runs between Monday 1 August and Friday 6 August 2021.

For more information on the campaign visit www.missingpersons.gov.au.

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