SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) – Bartt Felt was at a crossroads and his life appeared to be crumbling.

His mother said he was suffering from health problems and there was pressure from other areas of his life.
In March, 2018, Felt disappeared. The question was, did he commit suicide, was he killed or did he stage his death?

“I don’t know,” said his mother Joyce Grassy. “No one has ever found him. It’s just so hard because you can never have any closure.”

Felt’s last connection to others was on the Medicine Hat Bridge in San Juan County. He left a backpack but there was no other sign of him, according to his mother.

“He went out to Arizona and saw his father and he was in-stage and Bartt also had Huntington’s disease and it was affecting his mind a lot.”

Felt and his mother are from Michigan and his journey to see his father took him through San Juan County.

In March 2018, his last known location was, in fact, the Medicine Hat Bridge, according a member of the Utah Cold Case Coalition which researched his disappearance.

“His last known whereabouts was on March 23 at about 6 a.m.,” said Deborah Dilley, executive director of the coalition. “We know that because he happened to be wearing an ankle monitor and that was the last ping was had.”

The backpack Felt left at the bridge was turned over to the San Juan County Sheriff’s Department.

“It had a note in it that he couldn’t do it anymore,” said his mother. “He was very angry at me and his ex-wife and her boss. He wrote a letter but he wasn’t right anymore. You know, in his mind.”

Authorities found his abandoned car a short distance away at the Valley of the Gods. But there were no clues indicating where he was.

Authorities undertook a massive search in and around the San Juan River in hopes of coming across any signs of Felt.

“They went out by horse, person to person,” Grassy said. “They put drones out and he got a hold of all the guides on the river. There was never any remains found.”

The sheriff sent out alerts of Felt’s disappearance and turned to the media for help.

“We’ve kind of exhausted all of our resources in trying to figure out where he is,” Sheriff Rick Eldridge said in 2018. “We’ve put a message out to the public to help us. We’re hoping for a tip. We’re hoping for something that can help us move along in the investigation.”

But there was still no sign of Felt. Then something caught the attention of law enforcement. Could he have staged his disappearance? Later this week, Missing in Utah will look at that possibility.