James “Corbett” Flint says his mother Kimberly Flint, 57, loves going to church and gardening outside her home in Laneville, Texas. Corbett told Dateline his mother, a homemaker, is also a bit of a homebody.
Since Kimberly didn’t like to leave home, she often called her husband James Roy Flint, to bring dinner home on his way back from work. In fact, she called him on September 26, at around 3:10 p.m. to ask if he could bring her some food on his way home.
Corbett says he was returning to town after being away from home for two months driving trucks for work. He told Dateline his dad suggested that he pick up Kimberly so they could all meet and go out for dinner.
“She said no, but that was nothing out of the ordinary,” Corbett told Dateline about his father’s phone call. He says his dad didn’t think Kimberly sounded distressed or different.
At 3:45 p.m., highway patrol responded to a report of a one-vehicle crash on highway 84, Sheriff Jeff Price of the Rusk County Sheriff’s Office told Dateline.
Around 4:30 p.m. that afternoon, Corbett says his father received a phone call from the Rusk County Sheriff’s Office saying they had found the Flints’ 2016 green Jeep Grand Cherokee. They said it was found crashed into a cement guardrail on the side of Highway 84 near the Angelina River bridge.
Kimberly was nowhere to be found.
A statement by the Rusk County Sheriff’s office, confirmed that Kimberly was last heard from at 3:00 p.m. that day, and that her car was found off Highway 84.
Corbett says the police told his father they found the car in neutral, both sets of keys inside. Kimberly’s glasses were also found inside. Kimberly was nowhere to be found.
Corbett told Dateline it is very strange for his mother to be driving at all, because she usually refused to drive. “She didn’t like to drive; she said she didn't feel comfortable,” he said. “My mom didn't really like to go anywhere.”
James went home to check if Kimberly was at home, but could not find her. He picked up Corbett, and the two met with the Sheriff’s Office to give a description of Kimberly for a missing person’s report to the National Crime Information Center.
Corbett, who is a retired Marine Military Police officer, said he went to his mother’s home to do his own investigating while his father James went to the scene of the crash.
“I didn't see anything out of the ordinary,” Corbett told Dateline. “I found her purse with everything still inside… and I found her phone on the arm of a chair with the charger wrapped around it — like if you had just put it down and you were going to come back.”
Around 6:00 p.m. that night, Corbett joined his father where police had found the car, about 15 miles from Kimberly and James’s home. He said he noticed that police were not on the scene, so he called the sheriff’s office and two deputies joined them. They searched until 1:00 a.m.
The following day, Corbett says the search efforts grew to include search dogs and horses, and expanded foot searches. Corbett says both he and police called local hospitals, but did not find Kimberly.
Sheriff Price told Dateline police have conducted multiple dog searches, river searches since Kimberly’s disappearance and that they have searched her car for clues.
“There were no signs of bodily fluids -- blood or anything of that nature at the car,” Sheriff Price told Dateline. He says his office has processed the car more than once, and that none of its windows were broken. “We are fairly certain that she was the one driving the vehicle,” he said.
“She knew that my dad was coming home within 45 minutes with her food, and she knew I was coming in after working for two months. Why would she just jump up, leaving everything?” Corbett said to Dateline.“From everything I see, I think there is a lot of possibilities about what has happened,” Corbett told Dateline. He thinks someone could have tried to kidnap his mother.
Sheriff Price says police are looking into the possibility that Kimberly was picked up by a stranger after her car accident. He says police are sifting through evidence, including important electronic evidence. He says he is urging the public to come forward with any and all information.
Corbett is spearheading the family’s efforts to find Kimberly. As time goes by, he is becoming increasingly worried about his mother.
“I'm in disbelief that my mother is gone. I am trying to focus on finding her and put all that emotion inside my head,” Corbett said. “I'm just worried if she is out there, I don't want her to be in pain.”
Kimberly is described as being 5’ tall and weighing about 150 lbs. She has gray hair and needs glasses. If you have any information on Kimberly’s disappearance, please call the Rusk County Sheriff’s Office at (903) 657-3581.
This article has been updated on October 10, 2018 to include comments from the Rusk County Sheriff’s Office.