Family, girlfriend hunt for missing man

He was depressed about unemployment, they say

By John Branton, Columbian Staff Reporter

Published:

 
photoMissing Salmon Creek resident

The last time Joyce Chisholm spoke with her son, Craig Spydell, was on Sept. 9 and there was no indication he might try to harm himself, or disappear to get away from his problems.

“He sounded fine,” said Chisholm, who lives in Indiana. “We chatted about football. It was a normal mother-son conversation.”

She said Spydell, 43, also mentioned a business he was trying to start as a wine distributor.

Spydell, laid off from his job as a stock broker, has been unemployed for more than two years, living in the Salmon Creek area with a girlfriend.

He was depressed about having no work, and was under a doctor’s care and taking prescription medication for that, Chisholm said.

“He told me he was sick and tired of talking about it,” said his live-in girlfriend Kristin, 41, who spoke with him on Sept. 12 and asked that her last name not be published. “He couldn’t deal with it anymore.”

She said Spydell had run up some debt, another problem. As they spoke, he was slurring his words and she suspected he’d taken an overdose of antidepressants.

Last seen on Sept. 12, Spydell is being sought as a missing person. His car, a blue-gray Jeep Liberty, was found with his cellphone inside at the Salmon Creek Greenway trailhead in the 13800 block of Northwest 36th Avenue.

Later last week, a large group of search-and-rescue volunteers went over the greenway with dogs, but didn’t find him. A second search will begin Saturday morning, Chisholm said.

Spydell was in excellent physical shape and used to run in the area, Chisholm said. He is 6 feet 2 inches tall and 210 pounds.

His family and Kristin’s family have been actively looking for Spydell and fear he might have harmed himself. It’s also possible, they hope, that he disappeared on purpose to get a break from his troubles.

“We’ve been to homeless shelters and put up posters,” Chisholm said. “We’ve walked the (greenway) and talked to people on the street, ‘have they seen him?’”

Another worry, Chisholm said: “He’s never gone off without telling us. Never.”

She said she believes her son is a victim of the grinding economic downturn.

“I’m afraid there are going to be a lot more Craigs. A lot of people out there hurting with no work.”

If her son is somewhere safe, she said, “Just tell him that Kristin and his whole family love him and want him to come home.”

People with information are asked to call 911 or Detective Rick Buckner, 360-397-2024 or 877-274-6311.

John Branton: 360-735-4513 or john.branton@columbian.com.