Courtney Bryan’s last Instagram post depicts the 32-year-old gazing at the camera as she floats in the waters of the serene Hunt Hot Springs in Shasta-Trinity National Forest, California.
The post is dated September 23, 2021, the last time anyone had contact with Courtney. There have been no texts, no calls, no social media posts since, and her family is worried.
“She’s a free spirit and would often travel alone,” her sister Katana Curven told Dateline. “But she would’ve let us know when she was coming back. She would’ve checked in with somebody.”
Katana told Dateline that Courtney, who lives in Reno, Nevada, went to work on September 22 at Patagonia, where she works in the repairs department. She had planned to take the next few days off for bereavement, because their grandfather had died a week earlier on September 16.
“It makes sense that she wanted to get away,” Katana added. “But she would’ve been back by now. She wouldn’t let us worry.”
So when Courtney didn’t return to work on September 27 as planned, her family knew something wasn’t right. With the help of phone records, they discovered Courtney’s last calls and texts were made on September 23 from Shasta-Trinity National Forest, California.
Katana told Dateline her sister had called a former boyfriend to get directions to Hunt Hot Springs in Shasta-Trinity National Forest, which is where she took her last Instagram photo. Her last text was to a friend at 9:03 p.m. that same day. It was simply a link to a song on Spotify.
Deputies with the Shasta County Sheriff’s Office are investigating Courtney’s disappearance and according to a press release, her early 2000s red Subaru Outback, with Nevada license plate LG0637, is also missing, along with her dog Booch. Neither has been located.
Katana told Dateline that Booch is a black and white border collie wolf mix who goes everywhere with Courtney. Katana said her sister goes hiking often and is an avid climber. She added that Courtney also has a cat, who was found at her home in Reno.
“She left her cat here at her apartment, so I know she was planning on coming back,” Katana said. “She loved her animals. And her plants. And would never leave them like this.”
Katana told Dateline that she also knows her sister would never leave her nephew, who is her whole world.
Katana and her family have been in close contact with the deputies and say there have been sightings reported in the past two weeks, but none has turned out to be Courtney.
As the younger sister and Courtney’s only sibling, Katana has turned to social media -- specifically TikTok -- to help spread the news of her sister’s disappearance in the hope someone will spot her and come forward with information.
“It’s worked for other cases and missing people,” Katana said. “So now I’m hoping TikTok comes through for us. Please help me find my sister.”
Courtney is described as being 5’7” tall and weighs about 120 lbs., with blonde hair and blue eyes. She has two tattoos, a star on the inside of her right wrist and a geometric honeycomb on her calf.
Anyone with information on Courtney’s whereabouts is asked to call the Reno Police Department Missing Persons Unit at 775-321-8372.
Editor's note: Courtney Bryan's case was transferred from the Shasta County Sheriff's Office to the Reno Police Department.