KIMT anchor Huisentruit remembered by friends, family 28 years after her disappearance


MASON CITY — Today marks 28 years since the abduction of KIMT-TV news anchor Jodi Huisentruit. She was believed to have been abducted from the parking lot of her apartment complex early on the morning of June 27th 1995. Her body has never been found, she was legally declared dead by a Cerro Gordo County district court judge in 2001, and the case remains unsolved.

A gathering of family and friends was held in front of KIMT late this morning. Family friend Dean Hager read a statement from the Huisentruit family. The family thanks those who continue to show interest in the case.   “We know that along with us, you feel the pain and agony over Jodi’s case still being unresolved. Jodi lived her life as an optimist and she had a great passion for living life to the fullest. She was a bright light in this world and we would often hear her exclaim ‘I love life!’. We know that she would want us to be happy, be positive about the future, and to make the most out of our lives. However, we have to admit that as much as we remind ourselves to do so, sometimes it’s just too hard to feel that way.”

Dean Hager

Hager says the family is hoping to someday find closure.   “Jodi had such a bright future ahead of her and she should be here every day enjoying it. She deserves better and we continue to pray that someone will come forward with the missing piece that will finally solve this case and given Jodi the justice she deserves.”

Doug Merbach was Huisentruit’s news director at KIMT.   “It just gets back to we want justice, we want someone to be found. It’s not through a lack of effort. It’s not through anything that we haven’t tried. Law enforcement has done everything they can. Outside agencies like have done just an incredible job keeping Jodi’s story out there and keeping her memory alive.”

Merbach says he thinks of Huisentruit almost every day and he doesn’t want to see anything like this 28-year saga happening  again.  “The violence in this country has to stop. It just has to stop, and Jodi was a victim of that violence, and that was 28 years ago, and it’s worse now than it was then, and that’s not right. We should be doing better, not worse.”

Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation agent Ryan Herman asks everyone that if you know something, say something to law enforcement. “I think that any bit of information, any clue, anything, whether it’s about Jodi’s disappearance or about Jodi herself, feel free to reach out to law enforcement, the Mason City Police Department or the DCI.”

If you possibly have any information regarding Huisentruit’s disappearance, you can call the Mason City Police Department at 641-421-3636.

Listen back to Tuesday’s full ceremony via the audio player below