Donald Ray Fortson
Fortson, approximately 1998
Date reported missing : 11/03/1998
Missing location (approx) :
Missing classification : Endangered Missing
Gender : Male
DOB : 12/10/1945 (75)
Age at the time of disappearance: 52 years old
Height / Weight : 5'10, 150 pounds
Distinguishing characteristics, birthmarks, tattoos
: Caucasian male. Brown hair, brown eyes. Fortson's nickname is Don.
Information on the case from local sources, may or may not be correct : Fortson and his nephew, Huey "Eddie" Hazelrig, were last seen together in Cleveland, Alabama on November 3, 1998. They lived together and often worked together putting up wallboard. They did a job that day and returned home by 3:30 p.m., after which time Hazelrig placed a long-distance call.
The two men left home afterwards to go check on a car; Hazelrig collected antique cars. They may have been carrying about $3,000 in cash at the time. They were last seen at a tire store on U.S. 231. The two men never returned home and neither of them have ever been heard from again.
That evening, police found Hazelrig's gray 1984 Isuzu pickup truck on fire along Warrior Valley Road in Etowah County, Alabama. By the time the fire department responded to the scene, the vehicle had been completely destroyed. Authorities were able to determine no one had been inside the truck when it was burned, and they didn't find any blood, but the fire destroyed any other clues.
Rumors have circulated that Fortson and Hazelrig were both homicide victims, and their family members believe they did meet with foul play. Both men had arrest records, but Hazelrig had never been convicted of a crime and Fortson only had some alcohol-related misdemeanor convictions. Their cases remain unsolved.
Other information and links : ncy
Blount County Sheriff's Office
September 2021 updates and sources
Alabama Department of Public Safety
The Montgomery Advertiser
The Anniston Star
October 12, 2004. March 22, 2018; Information on the case from local sources, may or may not be correct : updated.
Interactive Missing Person Search Map