A 19-year-old mystery may have been solved Tuesday when authorities pulled a pickup truck out of the Androscoggin River containing what are believed to be the remains of Tony Imondi. The truck was discovered in the river a few miles south of Errol Village.
This story originally appeared in The Berlin Daily Sun.
Skeletal remains found in the cab of the truck will be examined by the N.H. medical examiner’s office for positive identification.
The 26-year-old Imondi had played in his regular Monday night horseshoe league on July 20, 1998 at Bill’s Seafood in Errol where he worked as a cook. According to a Berlin Sun article reporting his disappearance, he had left at approximately 11:30 p.m. in his girlfriend’s pickup truck and was never seen again.
His girlfriend had loaned him her truck to use for a few days while she was away for a family reunion. Imondi did not show up the next day to pick up his girlfriend, nor did he show up to work Wednesday morning as scheduled.
His own car was left at the home of Bill and Diane Keefe, the owners of Bill’s Seafood, and inside were his fishing tackle and golf clubs.
His clothes were at his mother’s house in Milan, where he sometimes stayed.
"He has exactly what he had on his back," Diane Keefe told the Sun at the time.
Keefe called Imondi an excellent worker and said it was unlike him not to show up for work. She described him as an outgoing, fun-loving young man.
"A lot of people liked Tony. He's just a likable kid," she said in the interview.
When he did not show up after several days, his family reported him missing. In the weeks immediately after he was reported missing, state police searched the back roads. It was unknown at the time if he had traveled south on Route 16 or west on Route 26. Interviews with friends and family did not reveal any clues of his whereabouts
His disappearance has baffled law enforcement officials and family members ever since.
Over the years, there have been searches by air and ground in the Errol area. The N.H. Fish and Game dive team has searched areas along the Androscoggin River and Lake Gloriette in Dixville. The truck was entered as a stolen vehicle with the National Crime Information Computer.
Despite the lack of success, State Police Troop F continued efforts to find Imondi.
Over the past month Troop F detectives and the Fish and Game dive team focused on the river section south of Errol. Fish and Game utilized divers in some areas and a side scan sonar in other areas. The side scan sonar was able to detect an image on the bottom of the river that analysis showed was consistent with a truck similar to the Ford Ranger. Further inspection of the area revealed that the image was in fact the missing Ford Ranger.
The State Police Major Crimes Unit assisted with examining the truck and skeletal remains. Imondi’s family members have been notified of the discovery.