IE 11 is not supported. For an optimal experience visit our site on another browser.

Brother pushing for answers in April 2021 disappearance of 52-year-old Dee Ann Warner from Lenawee County, Michigan

52-year-old Dee Ann Warner was last seen on April 25, 2021, in Lenawee County, Michigan.

Gregg Hardy was in college when his family got a big surprise: A little bundle of joy would be joining the family. That bundle of joy was a baby sister named Dee Ann.

Even though there was an 18 year age difference between the two, Gregg said he and Dee were very close. The whole family was. Gregg told Dateline that Dee was very outgoing and had a strong personality. She made friends easily and was the “life of the party.”

Dee’s family has been in the Lenawee County, Michigan area for five generations and Gregg told Dateline that they all live within a few miles of one another, including Dee’s four adult children from her first marriage. Dee remarried in 2006. She and her second husband, Dale Warner, had a daughter, Angelina, who is now 9 years old.

Dee with AngelinaParker Hardy

Raised in a small farming community, Dee had always been involved in agriculture, but was eventually driven to be involved in business. Gregg told Dateline his sister was inspired by their aunt and grandmother, who were both strong-minded businesswomen. So Dee started a trucking company and a farming business and was, Gregg said, “very active running the company herself.”

On Sunday, April 25, 2021, one of Dee’s daughters, Rikkell, stopped by her mother’s house with her husband and daughter around 9 a.m., and 52-year-old Dee was nowhere to be found.

“During this period of time when --. They were working on their house, it was being totally remodeled so it wasn’t livable,” Gregg told Dateline about Rikkell’s family. “So they were living in another location, and they would stop at my sister’s for breakfast on most Sunday mornings.”

Gregg said, “When they got there, they noticed Dee wasn’t in the house but, as they typically did, they went and started making breakfast. They saw one of her vehicles sitting at the office, which is only about, maybe a thousand feet from the house. So they assumed that she was at the office.”

Rikkell and her family continued to make breakfast, but around 10 a.m. they walked over to the office to check in on Dee, assuming that’s where she was. Dee was not at the office.

Gregg said Rikkell then called his wife, Shelley, and asked if she had seen Dee. Shelley had not, and called Gregg to ask if he had. He had not.

Dee Warner and Shelley HardyParker Hardy

Gregg told Dateline he last texted with Dee on Thursday, April 22, three days before she went missing, but hadn’t seen or heard from her since.

Gregg told Dateline that Dee’s husband, Dale, reported back later that day that he had left the house at 6:30 a.m. and Dee was laying on the couch snoring.

Gregg and his family rushed to set up a small search team and began sweeping the grounds of Dee’s property for any signs of her. “That time of year in Michigan there’s no foliage,” Gregg said. “So you could get a great vision everywhere.”

Rikkell and Shelley also searched inside the house, Gregg said. “One of the things that my wife noticed when she was in the house is that there were tissues from crying or blowing your nose everywhere.”

Later that same day, the family filed a missing person report with the Lenawee County Sheriff’s Office.

Lenawee County Sheriff Troy Bevier confirmed to Dateline that Dee was reported missing on April 25th by three of her adult children.

“Dee was last seen at her residence on Munger Road in Franklin Township,” Sheriff Bevier said. “She was last seen by a family friend the evening of the 24th, and then she was last seen by her husband on the 25th in the early morning hours.”

When asked if there were any security cameras at Dee’s residence, Sheriff Bevier told Dateline that “there are security cameras there and we are looking at them. We sent them off to – actually, the FBI is reviewing them.”

From the Lenawee County Sheriff’s Office’s initial review of the footage, Sheriff Bevier told Dateline that there was “nothing that jumped out at us, as far as being able to definitively prove anything one way or the other.”

Gregg told Dateline that to the best of his knowledge that there was a business-related dispute between Dee, her husband, and one or two of her employees the evening before she disappeared.

Sheriff Bevier confirmed that “there was an argument between Dee and her husband and I’m not sure exactly which employees. But it is well-documented and it has been followed up by the detectives.”

Gregg said that when he asked Dee’s husband on the evening of April 25 if he knew what had happened, he said that Dee just left. “He mentioned that she took a travel bag, a purse, her phone, and her curling iron and hair spray,” Gregg told Dateline.

“There was information early on in the investigation that it’s not unusual for her to do that,” Sheriff Bevier told Dateline. “There were theories that, in fact, that’s what happened.”

Gregg doesn’t believe the theories. “There are two things that Dee would not go without: a car and Angelina,” Gregg said. “And neither one went with her.”

Sheriff Bevier told Dateline investigators have looked into the possibility that someone might have picked Dee up and taken her somewhere. “Her bank account has been flagged, everything has been flagged,” the sheriff said.

“There’s been no activity on her bank account. We had the FBI assist us with, you know, ‘Did she fly?’ And we can’t find any evidence that she did, in fact, fly,” Sheriff Bevier said. “So we did go through all of that and checked all of that.”

Dateline reached out to Dale Warner multiple times to get his recollection of events, but has not yet received a response.

Sheriff Bevier told Dateline that since Dee went missing, there have been quite a few searches for her. “There were helicopter searchers, foot patrol searches. There were numerous canine searches – including a cadaver dog. There were drone searches, ground-penetrating radar searches with two different systems, excavations, there were forensic searches,” Sheriff Bevier said. “There were searches of medical records, finances, social media – all that stuff was searched.”

Throughout all of these searches, Sheriff Bevier said the only thing they were able to locate was a set of keys belonging to Dee. When asked if authorities had a person or people of interest in Dee’s disappearance, he told Dateline, “Really, we haven’t ruled anything out. We’re trying to keep an open mind and not rule anybody out and not focus on anyone in particular, but kind of focus on everyone in particular.”

Gregg just wants to find his sister. As the months have passed, he said he continued doing everything in his power to help find her. “I worked on it every single day. Absolutely every day. Either running down some information on tips, trying to speak to anyone involved,” he said.

“Some of that time I spent getting a conservator appointed for my sister, which is a court action.” Gregg said, “I’m the guy who petitioned for that to protect my sister’s business positions.”

Gregg said the conservatorship has been in place for about four months now, which means there is now a “representative of the court who virtually stands in as my sister in any business matters, or on personal matters, as well.”

The Lenawee County Sheriff’s office continues to work behind the scenes on the case, and held another search of the Munger Road home and grounds on October 11, 2021.

“We worked with the FBI and Michigan State Police,” Sheriff Bevier said. “There were specific locations identified around the area of the residence that were searched with the dogs and sonar.”

But nothing was found that would help locate Dee.

“There’s been extensive searching by them, but the problem is that it’s an extensive area,” Gregg told Dateline. “They’ve made concerted efforts, don’t get me wrong, but they still haven’t come up with anything.”

Dee’s family has taken to social media with a Facebook group called ‘Justice for Dee’ to bring awareness to her case and share updates.

Kathryn Phillips

“I know lots of people in this community, but there have been people I don’t even know that have come forward in support of Dee and the campaign, ‘Justice for Dee,’” Gregg said. “There’s been several people, including my nieces and nephews, who have worked very hard at this public awareness campaign, which has been tremendous and is still growing.”

“There’s a lot of people circulating ‘Justice for Dee’ signs, and we encourage that,” Sheriff Bevier told Dateline. “We want justice for Dee as well and we would love to get a tip that would send us in a direction that we can really uncover more information.”

Gregg is also extremely thankful for the support from the community. “I try to thank people all the time, as much as I can. I do really appreciate them,” he said. “The support has really been unbelievable.”

Dee Warner and her brother, Gregg Hardy.Parker Hardy

The hope is that by spreading the word, the right person to come forward to help locate his sister. “Dee was an extremely loving mother, a loving grandmother. A great person who would be willing to help anyone, anytime. And her missing like this is just so out of character, that it’s astounding to all of us that know her well,” Gregg told Dateline.

Dee is approximately 5’4” and weighs about 135-140 lbs. She has brown hair which, at the time of her disappearance, had blonde highlights.

Anyone with information on Dee’s whereabouts is asked to call the Lenawee County Sheriff’s Office at (517) 263-0524.