A Texas father of two vanished after leaving for an early morning walk last week – and relatives say one troubling detail alerted his frantic wife that something was amiss.
Colby Richards, 31, was last seen at his home on Musgrave Place in The Woodlands on the morning of May 26, FOX 26 Houston reported.
Richards, an engineer and part-time baseball coach, typically got up for work around 5 or 6 a.m., his wife Callie told the outlet.
Last Friday, however, Callie woke up to her husband gone and the family’s gate wide open, which prompted her to call the police.
“She was waiting to come back to bed and he didn’t,” the family’s spokesperson, Richards’ cousin Allison Fox, told The Courier.
“[Callie] noticed it was getting light out and she went downstairs to check on him and he wasn’t downstairs. He sometimes goes into the backyard and he wasn’t there but she noticed the gate was open.”
Richard frequently went on walks without his phone, but Fox explained to The US Sun that Friday’s pre-work stroll seemed different.
“I would say that it’s atypical for him to leave and not say, ‘Hey I’m gonna go for a walk,'” she said.
“Especially given that he was supposed to go to work that morning.”
Authorities walking the trail behind the family’s home eventually found a water bottle identified as Richards’, but have no other evidence to indicate his whereabouts.
Callie Richards is “just as surprised” as the rest of the family by her husband’s sudden vanishing, Fox told the outlet.
“He just kind of walked out and didn’t say anything,” she said.
On Tuesday, the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office continued to spearhead the ongoing search. Local volunteers were also out in droves on foot, bicycles, ATVs, and even horse, The Courier said.
Callie Richards told FOX 26 over the weekend that she is struggling to explain her husband’s absence to their three-year-old daughter and one-year-old son.
“My daughter knows,” she said.
“Initially, we tried to keep it quiet until we could get more information, but she knows. She’s been asking questions, like morbid questions. She’s very smart. She’s very aware of what’s going on. My son has been leeching to me.”
“What’s frustrating and what is fueling the online speculation is there is so little to go on,” Fox lamented to The Courier.
“There is so little to go off of and we are desperate to find something that would give us more of an idea on where to work.”
Richards is described as 6-foot-3 and 195 pounds with blue eyes and dark blonde hair. Jake Stovall, of Gulf Search and Rescue, reassured the outlet that he believes Richards is alive.
“It’s search and rescue, it’s not recovery. We fully believe that he’s still alive, he’s still out there, and he just needs help coming home, so that’s what we’re going to do,” he said.