Hale, approximately 1990
Date reported missing : 07/03/1990
Missing location (approx) :
Johnson County, Kentucky
Missing classification : Endangered Missing
Gender : Male
DOB : 01/21/1947 (74)
Age at the time of disappearance: 43 years old
Height / Weight : 6'1, 208 pounds
Medical conditions : Hale was being treated for a brain aneurysm at the time of his disappearance, and had an open skull injury. He has also previously suffered a stroke. He had seizures, severe headaches, muscular weakness especially in his legs, poor coordination, memory loss, a paralyzed throat that caused him to choke easily, drastic mood swings, and double vision at the time he vanished, and he responded slowly. He needs multiple medications and round-the-clock are to control his conditions. He is classified as disabled.
Distinguishing characteristics, birthmarks, tattoos
: Caucasian male. Gray hair, brown eyes. Hale may spell his name "Ruble." He has previously fractured his skull and his arm. His gallbladder is missing. Hale's left arm is crippled. He has scars on his head and abdomen and a discoloration on his right cheek. Hale smoked cigarettes in 1990.
Information on the case from local sources, may or may not be correct : Hale was last seen at the Paintsville Health Care Center, a nursing home in Johnson County, Kentucky, on July 3, 1990. He disappeared at around 10:25 a.m., at the same time that a 1988 Ford Tempo was stolen from the parking lot of Druther’s Restaurant, next door to the nursing home.
Witnesses reported a gray-haired man with eyeglasses drove the vehicle south towards Prestonsburg, Kentucky. Police suspected Hale stole the car, but his caregivers say he would have been physically incapable of driving far, especially without his medication.
Hale did not have his medicine with him at the time of his disappearance, and he had only $2 in cash. He received disability payments and never cashed his last check. The Ford he allegedly took had half a tank of gasoline at the time it was stolen.
The Hale family believes foul play was involved in his disappearance; they think he was murdered by someone connected with the nursing home. A private investigator hired by the family believed Hale found out about a scam some of the nursing home employees were involved in, and was killed in order to silence him. However, this theory remains unverified and no one was charged in the alleged scam.
Hale had been a coal miner for the Peter Cave Coal Company, but an injury put him out of work. He was declared legally dead in 1996. He and the missing car have never been located.
Other information and links : ncy
Kentucky State Police
September 2021 updates and sources
The Doe Network
The Big Sandy News
October 12, 2004. July 19, 2018; Medical conditions : and Information on the case from local sources, may or may not be correct : updated.
Interactive Missing Person Search Map