Melissa Whipkey holds a picture of her missing husband William Whipkey
PARADOX CITY – Melissa Whipkey doesn't believe her husband up and left his family, less than a year after returning from his latest tour in Afghanistan.
The Paradox City Police Department hasn't found any evidence that U.S. Marine Lance Cpl. William Whipkey was a victim of foul play. Nor, they concede, do they have any indication of his whereabouts at all.
“We're aware of the situation, but he is an adult,” PCPD Public Affairs Officer Jason Calhoun said. “We feel for what the family is going through, but at this point, we have not determined a crime has been committed.”
William Whipkey is a decorated Marine who works as a salesman for Wyndemere Motors in Paradox City. He's been overseas three times, most recently in Afghanistan, returning last fall.
Melissa Whipkey described her husband as a devoted father to their children, Billy and Samantha. Like many veterans, she said, he's needed some time to adjust as he stepped back into civilian life, but she saw no significant changes in his mood or behavior before he disappeared a little over a month ago.
“He was fine, like always,” she said. “He had just taken Samantha fishing, and he and Billy were talking about him helping with the robotics club at school this year. He was making plans.”
Mrs. Wipkey did see a startling change in their bank account, with what she would only describe as “a massive sum of money” deposited in the couple's joint account a few days after she last saw her husband.
Officials at the Whipkeys' bank declined to comment for this story, citing company policy regarding customer privacy. Mrs. Whipkey said she reported the unauthorized deposit to the bank and notified the police as well.
“That investigation also remains open, and we cannot comment on an open investigation,” Calhoun said.
A few of her husband's military friends have offered their assistance, but she's frustrated by the lack of answers – and what she perceives as a lack of interest by government agencies.
“My husband did not leave me. He did not leave his children. And he certainly did not take his own life,” she said. “I know something is wrong, and I don't know where else to turn.
“The police say they can't do anything. The Marine Corps says they can't do anything. And this city is crawling with people with powers, but since my husband doesn't have any, and isn't some kind of robot or space alien, I guess they can't be bothered.
“But he's a hero too,” she said, finally surrendering to the tears she'd been holding back for much of the interview. “And a father. And a husband. And we just need him home.”
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