When I originally posted the link to this Denver Post article back in 2012 I did not excerpt very much content. As I re-read that original post I realize that it did not really give much of the story. Mr. Mitchell of the Denver Post summarized the Jack Gordon case very well. I am going to now provide a more extensive excerpt from that story in order to help round out my readers' understanding of the case.
Two men, retired preacher, sex offender — vanish on same day in '08
On Oct. 2, 2008, 77-year-old retired preacher Jack Nels Gordon disappeared from his land in Costilla County, leaving behind a wife and seven children. That same day, Gordon's neighbor, a convicted sex offender named John Fureigh, also disappeared from the area, leaving nothing behind but questions. Did they leave together? Did they both choose to coincidentally disappear on the same day? Or did one or both of them meet with foul play that night? The only evidence left behind was a dark stain found on the dirt driveway leading to Fureigh's home. But even that has a mystery attached — the sheriff, strapped for time in patrolling a 1,200-square-mile county — didn't test the spot to see whether it was blood, or, if so, whose.
(NOTE: Let me clarify one little detail. Jack had seven adult offspring from previous marriages. He "left behind" his most recent wife and two young children aged six and five at the time. )
What is known is this:
Fureigh was living in Costilla County under the alias John Busby. And he had a good reason for using it. He bought a 5-acre parcel in the foothills of the Sangre de Cristo mountains to escape an active warrant for his arrest out of El Paso County for failing to register as a sex offender.
On the last day anyone saw him, Gordon announced he was headed to Luke Road and walked out to the driveway of their duplex apartment in Fort Garland, coffee cup in hand, and climbed up into his old white van. He waved good-bye to his family for the last time about 8:30 a.m. Gordon stopped by the post office, headed south on Colorado 159, then stopped at a local mechanic's house to discuss work on the van. It was the last confirmed sighting.
Gordon also had indicated he needed to speak with Fureigh, who was helping him design a website for people living in countries with no religious freedoms. Fureigh's house, which he also built himself, was about a half mile from Gordon's home. When Gordon didn't come home by his customary 2:30 p.m., his wife caught a ride to the house and searched for him. She found his van, but no sign of Gordon. She called the sheriff's office, but when an officer mistakenly thought she said Gordon normally came home by 2:30 a.m., a search was delayed.
Since that day, (October 2, 2008) no trace of Jack Gordon has ever been found. John Fureigh left his home on Luke Road the same day, never to return. Why would he leave a home that he had spent 2 1/2 years building with his own two hands? There have been rumored sightings of Fureigh in the hills of the Forbes Trinchera Ranches since that day, but he is not living in the area openly. Did they leave together? Did their paths cross on that fateful day? Was there a confrontation of some sort between the elderly Jack Gordon and the much younger Fureigh? Did somebody else kill Jack and Fureigh was a witness, hiding in fear for his own life? It is a certainty that somebody knows what happened.
We have heard through the grapevine that Fureigh's mother still lives in the area. Perhaps she knows of a way to get a message to her son, asking him to come forward and clear his name. If either of them is reading this post, they can contact the blog administrator anonymously by e-mail at email@example.com and let us know their side of the story. Maybe there is a rational explanation for what happened.
My suspicion is that the only way we will ever know what happened to Jack Gordon that day is if the burden of knowledge weighs so heavily on the one who knows that he can no longer bear to look in the mirror day after day. Rather than taking that knowledge to his grave, perhaps he will feel the need to tell somebody what he knows. Until that day, the man who killed Jack Gordon will fester in the rot of his own corruption. Ultimately God will pass judgment, even if the local authorities do not.