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MIDDLESEX — A missing car could be the key to the fate of a young Wilson man who vanished 16 years ago.
Travis Lamont Lynch vanished on Christmas Eve 2003. Disappearing along with him was his white 1992 Pontiac Grand Am.
“He was so proud of that car,” Travis’ mother Jackie Lynch said in a recent interview.
Travis was in a fender-bender and needed another car. Two days before Christmas, his mother helped him get his Grand Am.
The 21-year-old was very happy with his new car. His mother sent him to pick up some gifts and he was going to stop by his girlfriend’s house in Middlesex.
Travis — and his car — hasn’t been seen since.
The car, with North Carolina license plate RZS-4818, hasn’t been seen since it was at Travis’ girlfriend’s house on Claude Lewis Road.
Travis’ aunt Avalean Lynch said she doesn’t understand how his car hasn’t been found by now.
“How does a man go missing in a car and you never find either one?” she asked.
Investigators with the Nash County Sheriff’s Office have been looking for Travis and his car since he disappeared.
Their search has repeatedly focused on the Gallberry area between Middlesex and Bailey. But it’s included other areas as well, detectives said.
Deputies have dragged bodies of water, searched junkyards and used sophisticated equipment borrowed from other agencies to check underground. They know finding the car will help unravel the mystery of Travis’ disappearance.
Anyone who might know anything about a car fitting the description is asked to give detectives a call. Sheriff’s Maj. Miste Strickland can be reached at 252-532-4574. There’s a $20,000 reward for information in the case.