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Find Jodi

Beth Bednar, author of "Dead Air," a book about the disappearance of Jodi Huisentruit, speaks during a gathering of friends and the FindJodi.com group June 5, 2018, in Mason City on the news anchor's 50th birthday. 

MASON CITY — A group committed to finding Jodi Huisentruit gathered on Tuesday, her 50th birthday, to dedicate a new billboard campaign aiming to solve her disappearance.

Huisentruit, a news anchor at KIMT, went missing on her way to work June 27, 1995, in Mason City. Investigators have never found Huisentruit. She was declared legally dead in 2001, and no one has been charged in her disappearance.

“We wish Jodi was celebrating her 50th birthday,” said Caroline Lowe, a member of FindJodi.com. “It’s time to bring Jodi home.”

The group gathered in front of a billboard at 1223 N. Federal Ave., an intersection busy with local and truck traffic. 

Four billboards featuring Huisentruit's photo and the message "Somebody knows something...is it YOU?" were recently installed in high-traffic areas around Mason City by FindJodi.com, a website devoted to solving the case. 

A statement from Huisentruit’s family was read at the event. 

“We think about what we have lost,” the statement said.

Beth Bednar, author of “Dead Air,” a book on the case, said the group is "asking the public for a renewed zeal" on solving the case and finding Huisentruit.   

Bednar’s husband, Donn LaVoie, said a prayer, asking for God’s help to solve the case.

Gary Peterson of FindJodi.com is a former investigative reporter who has been looking into her case since 2003.

“If we can get together and do this job, get it done right, I think everyone else would be happy too,” he said.

Jay Alberio, a former police captain in Woodbury, Minnesota, said he helps the group interview people and follow up on leads.

Since FindJodi.com began in 2003, the website has received several hundred tips and leads.

Organizers are hoping to put a database together with the information to see if “there’s a link between A and B.”

The news of human remains discovered in Cerro Gordo County in late May involved mixed reactions, Alberio told the Globe Gazette.

“You hope it was her,” Albiero said. Officials said a forensic odontologist "definitively determined" remains were not Husientruit’s.

“I believe she will be found,” he said.

Candy Host, one of Huisentruit’s friends from her hometown of Long Prairie, Minnesota, spoke during the event. 

When she approached the microphones to speak to the reporters, one mic fell off of the stand.

“That’s Jodi, by the way,” she said, laughing.

Host helps organize an annual memorial golf tournament in Minnesota in June.

“No one should have to see a friend of theirs on a billboard,” Host said.

The website and its backers paid for three of the billboards; the fourth was donated. They will be up through June. 

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Contact Courtney at 641-421-0534 or on Twitter @CourtneyFiorini.

 

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