People love an unsolvable mystery. I know I do. There’s just something about the idea that you’ll never know what really happened. Take this one, for example, from Tuesday, April 14, 2009: Seventeen-year-old Aiden Chadwick went missing in Creek Bend, Wisconsin, never to be seen again. It sounds fairly mundane, but what makes this particular missing person case stand out is that it stubbornly defies logical explanation.
What we know about the case is that at 4:23 pm, Aiden entered a small, gas station convenience store with his mother. He can be seen walking in on the closed-circuit security cameras. He’s seen wandering around, even grabbing a bottle of soda from one of the coolers. He’s acting perfectly normal. Nothing suspicious. Then he steps out of frame and into a blind spot in the security footage and simply never steps back in.
There were plenty of witnesses on the scene, but none of them saw anything unusual. He didn’t leave through any door. All the exits were covered by cameras and there was no tampering found on the film. A thorough search of the property turned up nothing. No trace of Aiden was ever found. It was as if he simply ceased to exist.
The story went viral. For the next few days, it was all over the news. The media did what the media does and sensationalized it. The internet gave it wings and carried the news across the globe. Then, not surprisingly, came the crackpot theories and the conspiracy nuts, claiming everything from alien abductions and government cover-ups to time paradoxes and wormholes. People were scrutinizing every frame of the footage, pointing out every flaw on the film, claiming to see orbs, shadows and odd glitches that were somehow irrefutable proof of the presence of trans-dimensional beings.
But really, why not? No one else had any clue how to explain it. I know I can’t. It was like a locked room murder mystery, but there wasn’t even a body. I’m a proud skeptic and even I have to wonder if Aiden Chackwick didn’t fall through a freak hole in the universe.
Sadly, none of us will probably ever know the truth. But personally, I think I’m okay with that. Are you?