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Joseph was last seen in Sanborn Township, Michigan on September 3, 1983. He and his sixteen-year-old friend Christopher Jedra were dropped off by Christopher's parents for an overnight camping trip in the South Point area near Alpena, Michigan, on the shores of Lake Huron. The next day, when Christopher's parents arrived at the boys' campsite, they found it deserted. The tent was set up in the woods fifty feet from the shore, with the boys' t-shirts and underwear hanging on it. Their pants were on the ground outside the tent and their boots and unrolled sleeping bags were inside the tent. The boys' dog was tied to the tent; it had water but its food dish was empty. Joseh and Christopher had bought three cans of dog food with them, and had used only one.
Christopher was a student at Bishop Borgess High School at the time of his death; Joseph attended St. Florian High School. The boys, who both lived in Detroit, met each other through the Sea Cadets, a pre-Navy program. Joseph's body has never been located.
Michigan State Police