How did the McStay family disappear overnight? That's the question at the center of a new E! Investigates special, "The Family Who Vanished."
It happened in Feburary 2010, in a nice, Southern California, suburb. The McStay family, Joey, Summer and their two children disappeared without a trace, without any fanfare or noise.
What police didn't find when they searched the house was almost as disturbing as what they did find -- the family dog and a carton of eggs on the counter. If the McStays knew they'd be leaving for a while, they would have asked someone to care for their treasured family pet. And who takes out a carton of eggs for breakfast then walks away without touching them?
The McStays didn't leave on vacation. No, something much more sinister must have happened to them. But what? The only clue, is their abandoned SUV near the Mexican border and a blurry surveillance image that might show them walking out of the US in the middle of the night.
E! Investigates takes a look at the family and the theories surrounding their disappearance. You'll see interviews with Joey McStay's mother and brother. Says Michael McStay, "Who takes the children out in 50 degree weather to cross an international border at night unless someone tells them to, or unless they're under duress? That's not normal. There has to be something else going on behind the scenes."
The E! investigation continues in Mexico, where they interview a missionary who claims to have seen the McStays. Tessa Yeater says she saw them at a Wal-Mart in Mexico, but how reliable is that piece of evidence? Host Laura Ling also speaks with a friend of Joey McStay's who lives in Costa Rica. He claims not to know anything about their whereabouts, but others think he may be involved.
Through all of this, Michael McStay says the worst part is the not knowing. He and his mom have lived this long with the hope that Joey and his family will be found alive but always worried that they'll never see any of them again.
It's a tragic story, that sadly, has no end. Perhaps when E! Investigates airs the report on December 15 at 10:00 PM, it will generate interest and new leads. One phone call from one watcher could revitalize the investigation and lead to an answer to the question, how can a whole family disappear?
Photo: E! Entertainment