Kerry Messer discussed the emotions he felt when his wife's remains were found this month.
“When it was said and done and finished, the sheriff was very kind and took me back there to show me where the location was and that was much more difficult emotionally than I was expecting,” said Kerry. “For 20 months I had been trying to convince myself that Lynn couldn’t be alive and this was a solid answer to that question. It was like all the residual hope, which wasn’t much, but still there was that lingering hope that maybe we were all assuming the wrong thing.”
He said being the husband to a missing wife is not an enviable place to be, it doesn’t take long for people to start accusing you of all kind of things. Over time the accusations get more imaginative and crazy.
“Lynn and I have had a very loving and abiding marriage and relationship,” said Kerry. “She loved our life and so did I. I think that's what has made all this so hard, it’s what has made the grieving process so difficult, to lose that. It’s been 28 months and it’s hard to find the right words to explain it. I can’t explain myself, but I have found myself attracted to someone who has been very helpful and supportive through the process. So we have ended up being accused of being in an affair and that is the reason why Lynn is gone.”
Kerry said those accusations keep spinning more and more out of control and he can’t do anything about it, but there is no evidence to back any of it up.
“It’s just not true,” said Kerry. “Law enforcement went through all five of our laptop computers, they went through all of our electronics, they went through all of our history, and they have interviewed everybody who needs to be interviewed.”
Kerry said he has had more than 40 exchanges with law enforcement himself in the first 10 months and now he finds out he is being accused of being uncooperative with law enforcement.
“They never found anything about an affair with anybody because there was nothing there,” stated Kerry. “I am not sweating over what they found with Lynn’s body or her remains because I know there is no evidence that implicates me and I don’t believe there is anything that implicates my sons. I want to know what happened.”
Kerry said he is praying for his sons and the rest of his family. There were preexisting conflicts and issues and Kerry believes his son, Abram, has to work through his own struggles in his own way.
“I can’t account for why he has taken it as far as he has, but he never made these accusations until enough time had passed and everybody was stressed enough,” explained Kerry. “I think he’s talked himself into believing one thing or another and over time he’s talked himself into believing more. We’re hopeful and prayerful we will get the kind of answers that will help him settle down, help him process and help him go through the grieving process in a healthy manner. Right now he is just not doing it in a healthy manner.”
Thoughts of what happened
Kerry believes the redeveloping pain in her hips was much more overwhelming for her than he realized. She had spent 11 years making plans for their lives once she had new hips and would be pain free for 20-25 years.
“It’s what her expectation was and so she had a whole list of the activities we were going to engage in,” said Kerry. “We were very seriously looking at some tack and talking to some friends who were more experts with horses. We were about to purchase a couple of horse to get our grandchildren into horseback riding since she was going to be able to do that type of thing again.”
Kerry said it was 20 days prior to her disappearance that she found out that the reoccurring pain was something they couldn’t do anything about and she was going to have to go back on pain medicine for the rest of her life.
“She was devastated and there was some interpersonal conflict with someone else that boiled over shorty before and I think it all just overwhelmed her,” said Kerry. “No one that saw her that Monday night, no one reported seeing anything unusual. The only thing I detected unusual was she was more reserved than normal, but it was normal. She worked on her craft projects and the various things that she typically would do and we went to bed.”
At this point, he believes Lynn took her own life. He said that was really hard to accept for the first six months and he got the point he realized he wasn’t going to survive if he didn’t accept that as viable theory.
“Having found her, what I have been told as to where she was and the information I have gathered from different people over the last 28 months,” said Kerry, “it’s the only thing that makes sense to me.”
Kerry said he could share the first line of the note because he kept it in his wallet, but he couldn’t share the rest because it wasn’t written to him. The note read, “I am sorry pa to put you through this I love you with all my heart”.
“I carry this in my wallet because it’s what has sustained me through this,” said Kerry. “I don’t know I could have survived this if she hadn’t given this to me. Law enforcement got mad at me because I told them I made a copy of it. I’m sorry, but this is my note and she wrote it to me. But I have shared it with friends. It’s just the kind of thing you don’t know how to interpret it.”
Kerry said he has never known Lynn to do anything like this and he can’t explain how the location she was in an area that was thoroughly searched by the sheriff’s department and the professional search and rescue team that they had brought in.
“I don’t know if our people searched it afterwards because I wasn’t in charge of the searching, the family searching,” said Kerry. “My son and my brother-in-law was in charge of that and they would have to answer whether they went through those particular woods or not. It was my understanding that they started beyond our property, so I don’t know what-so-ever if the civil searches, I’ll call it the family searches, family and friends went through those particular woods or not.”
Kerry said Lynn did have a history of walking at night, but this made no sense. He said he has said it before, there was as light rain through the night and it’s his understanding that rain would have been falling when she left, just a very light drizzle, but the issue is it was complete cloud cover and it was completely dark.
“There was absolutely no light out, that is one of the reasons why we thought if she would have went through the woods she could have harmed herself with not even being able to see where she was walking,” Kerry said. “I have no idea if they found a flashlight or anything with her. They haven’t informed me about any details.”
Kerry said right now his heart is fixated on how torn up his family is, how torn up Lynn’s family is and the desire for the kind of answers that will help pull the family back together and help everyone understand the truth rather than the stagnate waters that have built up and gotten worse.
“I am managing, that is my patented response these days when people ask how I am doing,” said Kerry. “I just tell them I am managing. I didn’t do well at all the first year, I was a mess. The second year I started learning that this is what it is and I’ve got to figure it out. This year I have made a New Year’s resolution, 57 years old and I have never made a New Year’s resolution, so I made a New Year’s resolution this year that I was going to learn how to walk again.”
Kerry said it has not been easy because everybody tells you, "pick yourself up and move on," but when you do everybody criticizes you.
“So I have had to come to grips with it,” said Kerry. “It doesn’t matter what I do or don’t do, people are going to turn it and twist it and make accusations. All I can say is I pray the critics never find themselves with a missing loved one, with everybody pointing fingers at them.”
Kerry said he misses his wife and he has been processing that for a long time. The best way he can say for people to understand is that it is like putting your heart through a shredder.
Renee Bronaugh is a reporter for the Daily Journal and can be reached at 573-518-3617 or email@example.com
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