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Harrod was last seen at his residence in the 500 block of Carnation Drive Placentia, California sometime between 11:00 a.m. and 12:00 p.m. on July 27, 2009. He and his son-and-law were getting Harrod's new wife's arrival that day. His son-in-law went to the store and when he returned at 1:00 p.m., he found the housekeeper locked out and waiting on the porch, and Harrod missing. His wallet and keys disappeared with him, but he left behind his gold 1997 Toyota Camry and his eyeglasses.
Harrod got married on June 29, a month before his disappearance, and his new wife, Fontelle Heeter, was about to move in with him, but he vanished before she arrived. The couple had met and become engaged in 1950, but they were separated when Harrod joined the military and eventually both of them married other people. They reconnected by telephone after their spouses died and then met in person, and decided to get married only six days later. Heeter was packing up her belongings at her home in Missouri in order to move in with Harrod in California, and he was preparing for her arrival and looking forward to it.