Mystery as Missouri university student vanishes after leaving bar during Nashville frat trip

Riley Strain was last seen on security camera footage seemingly taking a wrong turn

Dan Gooding
Wednesday 13 March 2024 16:45 GMT
CCTV released by police shows 22-year-old missing student Riley Strain crossing road

A Missouri university student has vanished after being kicked out of a bar in Tennessee, while on a trip with his fraternity.

Riley Strain, 22, was last seen on Friday night as he left Luke’s 32 Bridge Food + Drink in Nashville’s Broadway area.

The senior’s stepfather said in an interview on Monday that the days since Riley’s disappearance had been “pure hell”.

His family has travelled to the city and been walking the streets looking for the young man who called his frat brothers after leaving the bar, saying he was going back to their hotel.

Riley’s friends tried to call him repeatedly after that on Friday night and on Saturday morning, but the calls kept going to voicemail.

Riley Strain was last seen wearing this shirt while on a night out in Nashville, Tennessee on Friday 8 March 2024
Riley Strain was last seen wearing this shirt while on a night out in Nashville, Tennessee on Friday 8 March 2024 (Metropolitan Nashville Police Department)

Metropolitan Nashville Police Department released video footage on Tuesday, showing Riley wearing a two-tone shirt, crossing 1st Avenue North to Gay Street at around 9.45pm on Friday. That spot is just over half a mile from the bar.

Investigators are asking anyone who could help locate the 6’5" tall man with a thin build, blue eyes and light brown hair to come forward.

The department said on Monday that it had searched the downtown area where Riley was last seen, including the riverbank, but “to no avail”.

Riley’s mother Michelle Whiteid told WSMV that she and his stepfather Chris had driven down from Springfield, Missouri when they heard the news.

“We talk every day, multiple times a day,” Ms Whiteid told the outlet. “This is the longest I’ve ever gone without talking to him.

“Oh, God bud, we love you so much and we’re all looking for you, all of us,” the mother added.

Riley was on an annual trip with his Delta Chi fraternity at the University of Missouri, or Mizzou. On Monday, the school said it had been in touch with his family

“The safety of our community is our highest priority,” Angela King Taylor, interim vice chancellor for Student Affairs, said in a statement. “Our thoughts are with Riley’s family as the search continues.

“We will be offering any support to them that we can, and we encourage anyone who needs help to reach out to our counselling resources.”

Anyone with information on Riley’s whereabouts is asked to call the Metropolitan Nashville Police Department on 615-862-8600.

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