(Introduction to show begins)
TODD MATTHEWS (Missing Pieces Host): ): I'm Todd Mathews...This is Missing Pieces. Tonight we have Randy Shaffer. How are you doing Randy?
RANDY SHAFFER (Missing Pieces Guest): Pretty good, thank you.
TODD: This is a really laid back show Randy. We've already had Randy singing a song from the Wizard of Oz but unfortunately we didn't get that on tape so he's in rare form today.
RANDY: We could have left that out...it wasn't bad.
TODD: You did a good job.
RANDY: Thank you.
TODD: We were just breaking ice, getting him all limbered up. I might talk him in to doing that again. Unfortunately we are here for a very different reason. Randy's son Brian has been missing for how long now?
RANDY: Just a little over 18 months. He came up missing April 1, 2006, and that was 3 weeks after my sweet wife passed away, unfortunately.
TODD: Now were these 2 events, how did they crossover? This is a big thing. Your wife passes away and your son goes missing, is there any possibility his disappearance is related to her death?
RANDY: Well, I don't really think so. I was out with him Friday night and he seemed to be in pretty good spirits as far as that and he actually he gave me more comfort than I really might that night than I might have given him. We went to a restaurant over in Reynoldsburg, the Outback Steakhouse and I got the same thing that my wife and I had gotten for a long time there and it kind of saddened my heart. I started to shed a few tears and he said "It's alright Dad, I'll be with you as much as I can". He comforted me. He didn't seem like he was real bad remorse or feeling real bad or anything like that or depressed. He was kind of anxious to go out with one of his buddies, I guess you call him a buddy and just have a good time. He just finished his exams and passed them, which I always thought that was extremely tough for him. After my wife passed away, his mom, being in med school and trying to keep his grades up and all that stuff. He was extremely smart. I know it took him a lot longer to do things after that. He would study, he would study maybe 2 o'clock in the till 8 or 9 o'clock in the morning. He was a night owl. He wasn't getting much sleep. I do know that which I think it attributed a lot to what happened that night along with all the other things that went on too.
TODD: So Renee had only passed away 25 days before Brian actually disappeared.
TODD: You can see why the thought of the connection being there because I know that was probably a very difficult 25 days and then this on top of it.
RANDY: It was terrible. I just couldn't believe it. She tried so hard to live. I mean she had actually gone through a bone marrow transplant which was just like pure living hell. She tried to exercise, she wanted to live. She tried so hard but the rejection was too great at the end, as far as that. They didn't have anything to fix her anymore. They were using steroids to try and combat some of the bleeding that she was having in her colon and also the diarrhea. Nothing would work. Finally a bad infection in her colon. There was nothing they could do. It was so devastating. We had been married almost 30 years. She was such a beautiful wife. She wasn't only pretty but extremely smart. She was a registered nurse. We did everything together at our house together. She was my soul mate, my partner in everything I did. We remodeled the whole house together. She was right there helping me. She might not have known how to do things. She was always there to support me and help me and hand me things. She was a wonderful woman. She was athletic too and musical like I am. We just had so many things in common. To lose her was just a shock of my life and then 3 weeks, and then Brian came up missing. It was just horrible. I was off for about 4 weeks. I decided to get back, three weeks I think it was. I was going to get back to work. I went back to work for just one week and then all of sudden my son disappears. I just couldn't believe it. I still don't believe it.
TODD: It's been such a short period of time too and I don't know how you've, talking on the telephone, we've shared some emails. You seem to have so much energy. I don't know how you do this. You've got this all over the internet. There's several links. We had no problem finding background data on your case. You've worked really hard on it. How do you attribute this energy that you have? How do you do this?
RANDY: I think some of it is God helping me and also the drive I had because I loved my wife so much. I think that's what drives me more than anything. We were both so proud of Brian. He his was 10th in his class in 2005. That's not 10%. That is number 10. And we just thought he was such a good kid. We never had any problems with him, just like his brother Derek. He's a great kid too. I just couldn't believe this. I just haven't stopped yet. I mean, I want him back. I want him back for me, I want him back for my wife, I mean if she would have been alive when this happened, which it wouldn't have happened if she was alive because he would have been there by her side just like he was everyday. Just about everyday he would stop by when he was taking classes at Ohio State. He always went over to see her. I know it wouldn't have happened but, I just don't know. I've got a drive that, it slows down every once in a while because I get a little down. There's just nothing that we've found out at all. There is absolutely not one piece of evidence that I know of unless the police are holding something back, which I don't think they are. To tell anything about where he could be at nothing, zero and after all the things I've done, that's why I keep trying. Sometimes I don't know what else to do. I've done searches. I had friends who had dogs. We went up and down the river with probably 20, 30 people with binoculars and bikes. Searching along the rivers, the Olentangy. We handed out thousands of fliers throughout the whole area as far as that. I mean, clear up to 11th or 15th something like that, quite a ways up. And clear down to 4th Avenue. All over the area. I bet we handed out at least 15,000 fliers, every bit of that, if not 20,000.
TODD: Now I'm reading that authorities do not believe that he disappeared on his own accord. There are circumstances there to indicate it is a possibility but they are pretty confident that is not the case.
RANDY: They hinted several times that he might have taken off. If you happen to see it, I sent you something, something I sent to the police. The last Christmas we had together was spent in the hospital which I've never spent Christmas in the hospital with anyone. It was with my wife and my two sons. Brian gave his mom a Christmas card and he just said "you inspire me to do great things one day". And with him saying that to her like that. I just don't think that's the biggest thing to me that he wouldn't just take off. Like somebody said, so many people ask every once in a while, maybe he just needed time alone. What do you mean he needs time alone? He doesn't tell his father? He's got a brother that loved him dearly. They were even closer when my wife was in the hospital. A beautiful girlfriend that loved him dearly and everything.
TODD: He was planning on getting married, right?
RANDY: Yeah, planning on getting married. He talked to my wife while she was in the hospital about what to look for in rings. She called up one of his very good doctor friends that she had worked with and he told of a jewelry store to go to. I don't know if he purchased one or not but there was a good indication he might have asked her, as far as getting engaged when he went on this little vacation with her and he had the tickets bought and everything. He was anxious to go. He needed a break. He needed to get away. And just too flat out disappear. That's why I'm still hanging on. I don't care what anybody says but I have a lot of psychics say he's alive out there someplace. And to me, I mean, I think I describe it in one of the emails I sent to you as far as with the loss of his mother which was a great loss, as far as that. And the stress of studying, trying to get through his boards. That was where he was at. He was ready to take his boards. Everything was scheduled to take his boards when he came back after this vacation. So he had to study a lot harder and he was not getting a lot of sleep at all for that month. And then you go out and have some drinks. I don't know what he had as far as drinks and then he had talked about me. He wanted to help you out, get you a job which Alexis told me. Brian was a very private person. I didn't know his deepest most secrets. That's just the way it was. He might have told his mom, even her I don't think he told her everything. But that's why I hold on to the fact that I think maybe he is alive out there. Because I talked to the detective next door. The first thing he said is people don't just disappear. If they are going to rob you, they are going to take your wallet. If you don't have anything in it, they are going to shoot you, stab you. They are not going to hide your body. If anything foul happened, I thought we would have found something by now. Not that I want to find nothing. That's why I have such a hard time believing he was gone. Either it had to be that terrible, which I can't believe, and there is even comments that Clint had said that Brian had a habit of smarting off. I don't think that's quite true. Some of the things he's said I just wonder about sometimes. He did searches with us and everything and he was fairly close friend of Brian but as Alexis had said before, he seems to get in trouble; not trouble- trouble, just maybe drink too much, that kind of nature. Clint said at times he would wander off and just get up and leave. Well, that happened maybe 2 or 3 times in a 6 to 8 year period. I mean big deal!
TODD: And this is a lot of drama in his life all of a sudden with his mom and school. It sounds like he had a lot going on but to leave with none of your personal belongings...his credit cards and bank account has not been touched since then.
RANDY: His car was still sitting there. They did have someone break into his apartment but they also hit 2 other apartments. I think that was purely kids. I don't think that was linked to anything. They did take Brian's DVD player and a small TV but he had 2 guitars sitting in there that were worth twice or three times as much what they took so they didn't know what they were looking for. Something that was quick and easy and had nothing to do with Brian that they picked on his apartment.
TODD: If he is alive and well, not well, but just walked away, something would have happened to snap. He's not his self.
RANDY: That's what I think. That's a huge amount of stress to lay on a 27 year old kid. With school, his mom, just everything, booze, not getting any sleep. I mean.
TODD: He's left the remainder of his family, the woman he wanted to marry, the career of his choice. That's a lot to walk away from. Twenty seven years of work put in on that and just to be gone.
RANDY: Well, that's the way I look at it but I, there are things that don't quite fit sometimes. But Brian, he would often like to kind of harass me a little bit. He got a big chuckle by pissing me off so to speak. Just like if you look on his MySpace account, on his website. He says that being a doctor was a side thing. What he really wanted to do was record some records and play in a band.
TODD: I see he had a Pearl Jam tattoo, that was a very good indicator.
RANDY: I was always teasing him about that too. Cause it was a tattoo. I didn't think a lot of the tattoo. I could have taken a marker and drew that on you. You paid for that??? But I miss him so much.
TODD: Tell me about his girlfriend. What has happened there? Wow did she manage to get through this?
RANDY: She's a doctor to be also. She's a very strong girl, a very intelligent girl, a very pretty girl. I mean, she's beautiful and she just maybe a lot like me as far as moving on. You have to; somehow, you have to deal with it. It's her career she's working on even as hard as it is for her cause they had everything planned together. They were going to take their boards together and everything.
TODD: He was looking at the American dream. Two doctors, a beautiful wife, a good career, the thing with his mother. I know that offset everything. He had a bright future.
RANDY: They even talked about; Alexis said she can't wait to make babies with you. They will be beautiful babies. That's what she would say. It breaks my heart. As of yet until we find Brian, she may or may not be my daughter in law. I'd love to have her as a daughter in law. She's a very beautiful girl.
TODD: Now you're other son.
TODD: Yeah, what has he had to say about this?
RANDY: Umm. I think he's hoping for the same thing I am, maybe the possibility of amnesia. Derek is a very quiet kid. If you talk to him, he'll answer the questions that you ask. He doesn't have the ability to go on and on and remember a lot of things and converse about them. That's just not the way he is. He's a little different in that aspect but he's a strong kid, a good looking kid, just like my Brian. Tall. 6', 2". Close to the same build. Both of them were very strong, as far as that, and Brian would often work out with weights. That's another thing. Brian was very strong from his waist up. For somebody to take advantage of him. They would have had to come from behind and hit him from behind and I watched that tape several times showing Brian go up the escalator. Even though from talking to the people who was with him, the girls, they say he had a lot to drink but he didn't look that drunk and that was at 1:30 or close to 1:57. Yeah, that's almost the last minute when this stuff happened and he didn't look that bad to me, like he was staggering. But Derek, one thing on his mind that Friday night, Brian had called and asked him if he wanted to go out drinking. And I'm sure it bothers him but Derek was going to the Funny Bone with his girlfriend that night so he couldn't go. And I'm sure he thinks about it all the time if his brother would still be here and we would know where he is but I know that works on his mind. I haven't really asked him much but it's got to as far as that. Derek works for the same company that I work for. I'm an electrician by trade and Derek does data work for the same company that I work for and he's got very good ethics and values as far as getting to work on time and working hard. He makes me so proud, just like Brian where he was at in his life, too.
TODD: Do you think this has this pulled you and Derek together or made you further apart?
RANDY: That's one thing that saddens me a little bit for some reason. I don't know why but I would love to be closer with him but as of yet, when we talk to each other. I call him several times a week as far as that. But my brother comes over every Friday his wife shows up too. We drink a few beers together just like we always did. Renee would come home from work and we would sit down and talk and have a good time and drink some beer and eat some chips and stuff like that. I miss that time when she was here but he still comes over to my house. Derek comes occasionally but a lot of times when I call him and ask him he'll say. "Yeah dad, I think I'll be able to make it. Yeah, pretty good chance I'll be over". And then I tell him so many times, every time you say maybe, do you know what that means to me? That means no.
RANDY: About 99% of the time, I'm right. Maybe means no. I love him to death but it hurts.
TODD: That's an easy no, to tell somebody maybe.
TODD: When you actually went to law enforcement with your case, how long did that take?
RANDY: I had to work at that. When Brian first disappeared, I thought something was wrong. Alexis and I made our own fliers and put out about 30 of them and my brother was there to help and Derek was there to help. They were the main ones and I think a few other people too. I think Clint actually was there also and we had contacted them. And my neighbor came down that night and he was a detective and made sure the report got filed. When I talked to his wife and she said they don't do anything for 48 hours. What do you mean 48 hours? Well, that's just the law. They won't react to anything. Bullshit, my son, there is something wrong. He should have been here and something is not right. So I started calling and John Hurst was the detective that was handling the case, as far as that, you know. I called him several times to tell him something is not right. My son is not going to show up Monday like you guys think. There is something wrong. I'm telling you that. Finally they put it out to the press. All of a sudden, I think it was Monday, all 3 of the stations came down and wanted to talk to me about Brian. They kept it out there for a solid 6 months. All of my phones, three phones, were ringing off the hook all the time, which didn't bother me one bit because I wanted to find my son as quickly as I could find them. There were other things, I know the police will work with you but you have to treat people with respect. That's the way I always treated them. I didn't want to step on anybody's toes because I knew if you do that, they not likely to help you out as much as they would. For that reason, I was very cooperative most of the time, as far as that. I even had search dogs, good friends that I knew. She said she could bring her dogs down if you want me to. I said yeah. So she brought her dogs down. I think a German Shepard at first and another day it was about 4 of them. We searched the whole area the next night where Brian would have walked back to his apartment because it was in walking distance. It was like 10 minutes to walk over there. We went through every dumpster that there was just in case somebody beat him up and threw him in the dumpster. I don't think we missed any, as far as that but the dogs didn't pick up too much. The next thing that frustrated me, I wanted to take the dogs. I wanted to check out inside the Ugly Tuna, the bar he disappeared from. I better talk to the police. So I talked to them. They said we want to bring our dogs in first and you can use your dogs as secondary. But we want to bring ours in first. When are you going to bring your dogs in? Tomorrow, that's as soon as we could do it but tomorrow my son could be dead and I called about four times.
RANDY: They finally allowed me to take my dogs in first but everything was like that. I even did something at the Sky Bar, a fundraiser. And I'm there. The manager, the press wants to come down and talk to me naturally. Channel 6, came down. They are the only ones that night. And a very sweet, good looking reporter Ann Alred. They said they have to stay outside. They can't come up here. All I was doing was passing out fliers and wristbands at the top of the stairs. And I just went over and talked to them very nicely. I'm not there to mess with anything, as far as your people. I won't talk to them. People are coming in for buttons and stuff. The press is here to talk to me. They are not here to talk to your employees if that is what you are worried about. He came over and said let her up. Sometimes I feel like God spoke to him, so.
TODD: Maybe he just needed things explained to him in greater detail to make it ok for him? And that's what you did. To make it ok for them...
RANDY: Both bars told both told all their employees, which I never understood. Do not talk to anybody about this situation. If you do, you will be fired.
TODD: That would almost make you believe, ok, they are trying to hide something. It leads to that.
RANDY: That's actually what I kind of thought of the Ugly Tuna and I will tell you, when Texas EquuSearch came just recently to search, they wanted to see the bar. So we went down to the bar. They had heard rumors there was going to be lots of people here, like 3,000-4,000. And I think they heard that from they did a search in Canton, the one girl that had been murdered. And there were like, a ton of people, maybe 4 or 5,000 people that showed up to help with that. That's all they heard. Tim Miller just looked at them. He's the guy that handles the stuff for Texas EquuSearch. No, we're just here having lunch. We just wanted to see the place where Brian disappeared. There is not going to be 4,000 people. They were all nervous, and then all of a sudden there comes the Gateway Campus people. We weren't' told about this, what's going on here? What's to tell?? We're not doing anything, we're having lunch. (Laughing) So I don't know. Those people from the start, Gateway Campus Security, I mean when Brian disappeared and I went down there with fliers, Kevin Miles eventually got us more fliers, he's the president of CrimeStoppers. They came out. I wasn't there at the time. They came out and told my son Derek they could not put up fliers on the poles right out in front of the courtyard area where this all occurred at. That was against their policy. I called Kevin Miles up and he's such a great guy. He said don't worry about it. I'll take care of it. He goes down there and says this guy is missing his son and he wants to put up fliers to try and find his son but that's ok, if you guys don't let him do it, I'll have Channel 10 down here and you can tell them why you won't let this guy who lost his son put up fliers. Naturally, that immediately changed their minds and everything and then they were cooperating fully, which is a bunch of bullshit and it still is. They left his fliers up for quite a while after that, maybe a month but even with Texas Equusearch, I asked if I could put a few fliers up. Do you think they could leave them up in the bar? No. They are down already because I went down there last weekend. I haven't done this for a while. I just got a thought in my head that I wanted to go down for whatever reason. It was late. It was like 12:30 at night. I went down there and walked out on the courtyard. The same people, you know, beautiful girls with skirts up to their ass. Excuse me, but that's the way it was and I don't understand that sometimes. And I went up to the bar it's kind of crowded up there and everything you know and no fliers. I wanted to check and see if they were up but they weren't.
TODD: You know, I guess a bar doesn't want to be known for the last place someone was seen but that takes away the humanity of things as well. You see that they should.
RANDY: Unfortunately, the bottom line is it's all about money...
TODD: Uh huh.
RANDY: We don't want people to know about this. We want to push this under the carpet because that will hurt our business and everything, as far as people coming in there... As for rumors, they don't have a very good reputation. They say a lot of things say bad things happen at the Ugly Tuna Saloona.
TODD: They don't want to be under a microscope, is the way it sounds.
RANDY: Yeah, actually the guy that has been putting Brian on the side of racing cars for me and everything. He's a super guy. His name is Martin Ray. He just came out of the blue and wanted to help. In fact he's going to have Brian on a truck in the race in Georgia this coming weekend, this Friday I think. It's the NASCAR Craftsmanship Truck Race, which should be super. But he also plays in a band, he plays drums and he called and wanted to see if they would let me do a fundraiser there, bring some bands. He calls them up and do you know what the first thing he said to them, "we cooperated with the police as much as we can, wait a minute!" I just wanted to talk to you about getting a couple bands there to perform for Brian. I don't care what the police have done or what you've done with the police. The guy got all wound up, like you know, I don't know. I mean, there are several people because of the area and I'm not going to say too much about who, other than the bar. They would kind of like this pushed under the rug. More than Brian that has disappeared in that area from Ohio State as a matter of fact. So it's not just one, it's about 3 people I think.
RANDY: And it continues to happen. Seems like there is always stuff going on. There was a girl that was raped not too long about. One thing, when I went down there that night there were 5 policemen there and one I knew very well because he was the one that was there the night, when I've been down there several times. I've been down there at 3 o'clock in the morning several times and talk to a lot of people. He told me that the Sky Bar, which is the one directly across from the courtyard from the Ugly Tuna, that a lot of bad things were happening there now. Said it wasn't too long ago there was a shooting in the parking garage right behind there where someone was killed. It's not a nice area. It looks all pretty on High Street but just to the east, it's not very pretty. There are drugs and all kinds of stuff just east of there. It's a low income area. There's a lot of bad things happen over there. In fact, when I did a search over there, High Street is where the bar is but if you head east, I think the next street is, I was going to say it was Summit but that might not be right; two streets over, no, the first street, take that back I think that was Summit. We went to that street, there were people driving back, some black people said do NOT cross over there. Stay where you are at because you might get killed.
RANDY: And you go to the West and it's the Ohio State Campus. You will lose your life if you go over there, good chance of it.
TODD: Now the University itself, the school, is there anything they did to try and help with this?
RANDY: Oh yeah, a very good friend, Gary; I can't think of his last name right off hand. He was in charge of Communications and stuff like that. They helped with fliers. Ohio State students came out we went door to door. The President of the university came out one night and went door to door and I went with Alexis and her and they did a lot as far as that. They are all over the campus still as far as Brian's picture. I talked to a good friend just yesterday. She works at Ohio State. She's a saleslady; she says "Your son is all over the place over there". So they keep the awareness out there as far as Ohio State people and also, they didn't ask this year but last fall I talked with the first year medical students coming in and told them to think about the safety around this area. If you're going to go out and drink, be safe about it and make sure you are with somebody and when you're with somebody you don't leave without that person. You don't go by yourself. Always travel in pairs of two. That's one thing I try to preach more and more too young people. Try to drink responsibly. I know you guys like to party but you're getting a little too carried away. If you're going to drink and go overboard, do it at your apartment. Don't do it at a bar and walk so far to get there.
TODD: its good thing the college didn't take the same stand as the bar. A lot of colleges don't want to be known as a good place to go missing
RANDY: I know. I'll tell you something else a lot of people don't know. There is a, I'm trying to think how to put this. There is a law against being over served but the only problem is with that if somebody is there and somebody is being over served; if the bartender continually serves that person and it's obvious the person is stone drunk, they have to call somebody to call that in. Or in other wards, nothing happens. That's what happens. There is a handful of people that handle stuff like that. It's way too large of a problem for the detective departments to handle. There's only like 5 or 6 detectives that handle this. It's all over the place. How can 5 or 6 detectives handle bars all over Columbus? They can't.
TODD: You said the first six months, there was a lot of activity as far as tips. What types of tips came in?
RANDY: The tips were all bogus. Everything that came in. There was another Brian Shaffer that was actually a drug addictive. I think even Kevin Miles wanted me to go check out an apartment that was close by where they thought somebody might have seen Brian. They showed picture to one of the tenants and they said that wasn't the guy. A guy, with prostitutes and stuff. There haven't been any tips that amounted to anything. I mean nothing. I was trying to think of, the only one that really hurt. You'd be surprised, well you probably wouldn't be, what some people would do to get attention. Somebody called and said Brian and I were in cahoots to collect victim's insurance. I could not believe that and that was one of the questions the detectives asked me when I did a lie detector test because I was upset because his buddy Clint (Florence) wouldn't do one. And both Clint and Meredith, the two people that were with Brian at first that night both got high priced lawyers probably about 3 or 4 months out. That's when we were doing an interview with Dateline. They were supposed to do an interview and both said we're not talking and got high priced lawyers. So I did a polygraph test supposedly police thought this would maybe convince Clint to do one if I did one but it didn't. One of the questions they asked they said something sent a tip that we are in cahoots about collecting victim's insurance. Naturally it raised a needle on the thing. When he asked me, he said you did pretty good but it raised the needle on that one question. What would you think? That's ridiculous. If the needle went up and down it's because I'm pissed as hell. I'm outraged that somebody could say something like that. People are so cruel. I'll tell you the worst thing that anybody did that really hurt a lot, on Brian's website, a person sent an email in called himself Jesus. Naturally I caught it when I looked at it and said "What's this?" He said "I know what happened with Brian. I was around him that night. He was with a couple of black guys who said something about having sex". No I take that back. "Brian said something about having so they got pissed off and beat the shit out of him. When Brian woke up" (to say it nicely which is not what they said) "Brian had a big black penis in his mouth. They shot him in the head, burned his body, and then we had sex with his ashes. By the way, I'm one of the black guys that was there and if Brian's girlfriend Alexis is still around, have her give me a call." I could not believe that I told the police about this, the guy even had an email but it's never happened since then. I could not believe somebody could do that.
TODD: Do you think that was a diversion? Something meant to distract or?
RANDY: They acted like they carried him out of the bar is what they said. Well there's enough cameras around there that would have picked up that so that couldn't have happened in the first place
TODD: I mean even with you, the suggestion of the fraud, to put the full focus on something else? Or even to play with people's minds even?
RANDY: I think it was one sick person, a very sick person
TODD: There is one question. Is there any type of reward? Have you ever thought about doing something like that?? Some type of reward fund for his case?
RANDY: Oh yeah, there is a reward. It's $25,000; $25,500 is what it is for Brian. Anyone who brings information that helps me find him; they can receive that money if any tip brings Brian home to me.
TODD: How did you go about actually getting those funds together for a reward? Was it donations or you own money???
RANDY: Donations, a lot of love from a lot of people the Local Union 683 that I work for donated $5,000; and the church that I go to, they put in $5,000; the doctor that I was mentioning before that was close to Renee, he gave $1,000. Ohio State put in $5,000 plus, I think, and there's some other people in there also. I can't think right off hand without looking at a flyer but that is where it all came from. A lot of people who cared about me and Brian that wanted to help
TODD: Like I've said, you've got a lot done in a very short amount of time. You should be proud of the amount that you've got pulled together for this, all the information on the internet. You've got ton of stuff out there. I know it's a lot of work
RANDY: What really upset me the most a lot, .have you ever heard of Joe Manmana?
TODD: No I can't say I have.
RANDY: Well, he's a philanthropist.
RANDY: He lives in Philadelphia; well he DID as far as that. He came to Columbus to talk to the press. He often puts up large sums of money to help find people. Well, he put up the difference to make it $100,000 to find Brian and it was like that for one week. It was $100,000 and it didn't bring in any more tips than what it was when it was $25,500.
TODD: But you have a lot of hopes, now that's a lot of money for one week.
RANDY: Yeah, yeah.
TODD: If you felt like that was going to do it.
RANDY: Well, he didn't help out things later, as far as that, because Joe is now in federal prison for tax evasion, fraud and all kinds of stuff. The biggest was he put up $100,000 for I believe it was the Julie Popowich case. I think his words were "that was to bring this person to justice and convict them". No, that wasn't the way it was supposed to be. It was for somebody that brought a tip to bring this person in not to totally convict, and he says I'm not paying until this person is convicted. And he's never paid a dime. Somebody said he's paid $5,000 when he goes out and supposedly puts out a $100,000 here; $100,000 here; $100,000 here. That didn't do my case any good. When people think here's somebody putting up a lot of money when we help and maybe try to find this person, we could get a lot of money if we find something. If somebody sees, this is a bogus person; this person doesn't even pay up. Maybe it's like that all the time when people say they're going to give money for help and stuff like that...why should I? You're not going to get paid.
TODD: It's very possible, if Brian's he's out there whether his memory is completely intact or not, there is possibility that he could run into this information online; a very good possibility.
RANDY: It's the reason why I keep it out there.
TODD: You've got to do it.
RANDY: If you look on the website, it's amazing the states, look at the responses. He's all over the states but then I met a guy who was a Boy Scout leader at the Texas EquuSearch we did just recently. He said he went to a meeting with a bunch of parents of Scouts. Out of curiosity he asked how many people have heard of Brian Shaffer. Out of everything I've done that around the metro area in Columbus, you'd think that everybody would pretty much know. He said about 1/3 of the people raised there hands. Brian is out there a lot but not as much as people think. I could almost walk around my neighborhood and I could almost guarantee that even in the neighborhood I live in there would be people don't know it. Maybe they don't watch the news.
TODD: If he's ok and he could actually hear you talking tonight, what would you want to say to him? Deliver a message to him.
RANDY: That I love him very much. I'm sorry we had to lose your mom, my great wife. And if you can see me out there, if your mind is not quite there - please come home to me. Please come home because I love you and want you back.
TODD: Randy, I think you're getting a lot done. You're working hard trying to put your family together as best as you can.
RANDY: I just don't know if I'm different than other people because it hurts. Not that it doesn't hurt a lot but just like Tony Luzio, he's lost his son. It's pretty much the same circumstances but there is a car involved with his son. They never found his car either but I wanted to bring attention about his son when I talked to Texas EquuSearch, I asked if they would come search for his son Tony too. They did. Tony and I also did a really neat fundraiser at Flanagan's. They have volleyball courts and everything. It's a pretty neat bar up in the Dublin area. It's a good time. We've done it twice. I'm pretty sure it will be every year to support and raise money for Crime Stoppers to help other people.
TODD: Your life is very different now than it was two years ago. That's for sure.
RANDY: Excuse me?
TODD: Your life is so much different than it was 2 years ago.
RANDY: It's changed drastically.
TODD: I don't think we realize how quickly your life can change like that but you still have managed to so much. You're trying to keep up with your routines; you're also doing all these other things.
RANDY: That's nothing. I often talk especially to people that are married. I try to take people aside and tell them you need to tell each other you love each other everyday. You might not see your son, your wife, your daughter. So live everyday for the most you can get out of it. Things do happen. I don't know why they happen. I ask God so many times why. I held tons of people's hands and prayed myself when I was at the hospital with her. I probably had a dozen nurses, actually it as kind of funny. I don't want to knock the pastor that was there. I was hoping for one of them to say a prayer but for some reason it seemed hard for them. I said, oh heck with it. I was praying for my wife for God to save her, to bring her back. I've done the same for my son at the prayer vigils. I was never a spokesman. Believe it or not. What all this has done for me. I can stand in front of 500, 1,000 people and talk about my son. It doesn't bother me at all.
TODD: When you've got a passion, it takes away the stage fright and fear.
RANDY: Fears out the door when it comes to talking to people. I rarely write it down might write a few notes, in general I know what I want to say. Time limit.
TODD: You've been a really good guest because I've not had to say a lot. I like to keep the guest talking as much as possible; get as much as your own words to the public. When we transcribe these shows, it equals about 20 pages of text. That's a lot of commentary to put out there. I try to keep the guests talking more.
RANDY: I appreciate that. It doesn't bother me.
TODD: You do it with ease. I can say that. You're able to really handle it. I don't know how you do it.
RANDY: I was going to tell you one other thing. I got the Citizenship of the Year Award along with Tony Luzio and Sally Sheasby. Sally lost her son if people if don't know that. I think it's so sad; I had to lose my son to get the Citizen of the Year Award.
TODD: It's not exactly the ideal circumstances. But what's your plan? You've gotta have a plan. You're a guy who always has a plan of action, I think. Things have died down now, all the pointless tips. What do you do next in this search?
RANDY: Texas EquuSearch is supposed to come, I've kind of heard about that. I've called and called them. I don't understand why I can't get a courtesy call of when they are coming. The Boy Scout leader said they had about 400-700 people that want to help but I have to know when so they can plan for the weekend. I had to tell them, "I can't tell you". He told me the first weekend in November. That's all I know. If they are coming, I don't have any idea. I've called Tim Miller twice, three times a week on his cell phone. He will not answer his cell phone. I called their office and they were going to give him the message, I don't get anything. I went so far and looked at their site and there's another director and sent him an email about three days ago so I don't understand that. I wanted to try and clear a few things. There is a psychic, I can't think of the name of the street right off hand, but it kind of leads it over by the Scioto but he thinks there is some piece of evidence there. Ohio Search and Rescue said they will check that out. I think they will do shortly.
TODD: An amazing number of people actually turn to psychics during something like this. We've talked about it on past shows and you know I question some of the psychics and why they do things but on your experience...how has that experience been?
RANDY: Well, I mean, there's certain things. I don't know what to believe. I've never dealt with psychics before. I had one psychic, well she didn't call herself a psychic, and she was a medium or something like that. I'm asking her questions. Trying to feel her out. She said my wife had come to her and would not let her sleep, she kept saying "go find my son. Go find my son". This was very early. So I asked her little things. She was laughing about something, about a color; she thinks it's funny. The only thing I can think of is I wore shoes that, slip on shoes that had very bright blue on them. She hated them. We go to the movie theatre and I'd have these bright shoes on. She'd say "I don't know why you wear those things." I kind of asked her if she knew what my wife did for a living. She said I feel she's a very nurturing type person; she likes to help people; she takes care of people. And I didn't lead her on anymore than that. She said she was a nurse. Just certain little things that all of them say. They hit on things that, I think, how can they know this? Of course, if you talk to the police, they have a totally different aspect. They say they never know anything; they never solve anything. But then again, they say there is a discrepancy between psychics and what other people they say. I just listen and go with the flow. I have to take it to heart and think about it and maybe check it out to see and I do.
TODD: Do you recommend the use of psychics in this type of thing? Would you recommend for somebody in your same situation to actually seek out a psychic?
TODD: It has to be hard to take that.
RANDY: For the amount of time it's been few weeks, 2 months...6 months...a year and a half. Well that time is all past and another one said I would definitely know something in a couple weeks, definitely a couple of weeks; you'll know something for sure. It's been more than a month. I would say that in my mind that means these probably are lies. The only thing that gives me is something to; I guess for me, it's like statistics. You talk to 15 psychics, out of those 15, 10 say he's alive and 5 say he's gone. So that's a plus for me.
TODD: Seems that you keep things working. You're working on different things on this and it's something to get you through the next time period, to get you through a time period. You see that being normal for your life, for your future. I do the same thing. I've got a lot of things going in my life going on. I do get depressed. I have no reason to get depressed except things slow down and I feel like I'm not getting enough accomplished so I basically overbook myself and get too many projects going at once and I catch myself up in that. I get through a rough spot and I get so busy that I didn't realize time had passed.
RANDY: One thing that bothered me at first was my memory. I had a bad thing, I'm an electrician. If I was working in the ceiling, I would always leave my tools sit someplace, always. I used to do but it never really bothered me much. I always found it most of the time. People say it's just you're getting old. I don't think my mind was like this before all this happened. It's like for me to focus on something that could be right in front of my eyes and I don't see it. I'm looking all over the place because all excited and I want to find it now. Just like this morning I had the peanut butter out and I also had an empty jar. I know I didn't put it in the cupboard. I'm scanning everything in front of me and to the side and right on the stove. There was the peanut butter.
TODD: Well we've kept you busy a little bit this afternoon anyway. Gives you a chance to talk about thing. I've enjoyed talking to you, yesterday as well. You're part of a new family. You'll continue to hear from us, not a family you want to be a part of but a new family anyway.
RANDY: Do you ever talk to Lori?
TODD: Lori Davis?
RANDY: Lori Davis, yeah
TODD: Through email only. I know so many people now. I talk to so many people but mostly it's on email. You really get to know people really well just in email often.
RANDY: She's a beautiful girl, her and her husband Mark. They have an 11 year old son where his bones are crystallizing from the waist down. It's very rare; I even told her if you want to do something in the press. I said let me know, I know all the people in the press. We'll get something out there in the press. If anything, I just want to help people.
TODD: You've just got to keep on living. I think you've done that very well.
RANDY: I do. I'm in pretty good shape. I went and had my cholesterol checked and he said you're in perfect health. There is nothing wrong with anything.
TODD: I'm probably not in as good as health as you are.
RANDY: I've got a few aches and stuff. I've had a hip replacement. For the past couple of weeks, I've had a few more aches. Believe it or not it was something stupid. I got at the podiatrist, I took insoles out of my shoes and they make a difference.
TODD: You proved it to yourself...
RANDY: Yeah. I put it back in and that's all it was because those insoles aren't in there. I prefer to do things on my own. I do about anything on my own. Love fixing stuff. A lot of things is common sense, everything. Not too many things you can't figure out with common sense. A lot of people don't have that ability.
TODD: Unfortunately that is true.
RANDY: I've got the ability to look at somebody and actually almost see what kind of person you are and I know that for a fact. I've never had anybody walk over me or anything like that. When my wife was alive she started working for Mt. Carmel West and Mt. Carmel East, there was a guy who was her boss. I hope he doesn't listen to this but when I met him, he came across as being arrogant. I told her your boss is not what you think he is. My exact words were I think he's a dickhead.
RANDY: And he was and I'll tell you, I can't believe but then again I can...when my wife was in the hospital...he never came to the hospital one time to see her, so I was absolutely right. 100%.
TODD: My wife had a really bad clot when we had our last son; he's 6 years old now. The blood clot was actually 13" long in her leg. I think the outlook was really bad at first. It was a crazy time period for me but it surprised me how many people were right there for us. I wish I could be the friend that some of these friends have been to me. They were right there with us and I wish I was that same person. I stay so busy in my life, I often neglect the people that I'm not there like I should be...Randy it was great having you here tonight. I have enjoyed talking to you. You've been a great guest. I hope to have you back here in with some good news in the future with something positive. You're working very hard to get to that point.
RANDY: Thank you much Todd. He's a great kid and I have to find him, somehow and I don't want to wait ten years to find him. I have to find him now. That's why I keep trying. I don't give up. I just don't. I rely on people to give me ideas about doing things. Actually, one thing that Marty, the guy that does the racing, was going to do was have a fundraiser at the bar where he disappeared from.
TODD: Wow. I hope they are receptive to that.
RANDY: I think I started to tell you that when the guy went berzerk like "we've done everything we can to help you". We've talked to the police. No, no, no. So he's supposed to talk to him again but right now the biggest thing on getting Brian out is race cars. For anybody that likes to watch NASCAR, look for my son's picture on the race cars. He may be on a truck this weekend. He's supposed to be on a truck, let's put it that way. It's NASCAR Craftsmanship Series. I'd love to see him win with Brian's picture. He's a beautiful kid. I want him home.
TODD: You let us know and we'll put a photograph of that car on the website but it's been great talking to you and hopefully we'll have you back again someday. Goodnight to our audience. Goodnight everybody. Talk to you next week.
Date Missing: Between March 31 and April 01, 2006
Last Known Location: Ugly Tuna Saloona located at
1546 N High Street, near Ohio State University Campus
Birthdate: February 11, 1977
Hair Color: Brown
Eye Color: Hazel. Black spot on iris of left eye
Height: 6' 2"
Weight: 160 to 165 lbs.
Tattoos: Pearl Jam symbol tattooed on upper right arm
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