Northwest NEWS

March 18, 2002

Local News

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Public's help sought in finding man missing in Woodinville area since Feb. 28

by Jeanette Knutson
   Staff Writer
   The disappearance of Kenneth Allen Leopold, 39, known by some as "Cadillac Ken" for the 70's Eldorado he used to drive, baffles his family. He was last seen around 11 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 28, walking away from a female friend's home in the 22700 block of 133rd Avenue Southeast. He was following a wooded trail back to his parents' home in Woodinville where he lived. But he never made it home and hasn't been seen or heard from since.
   Leopold, 6 feet 2 inches, roughly 190 pounds, with short brown hair, brown eyes and a mustache, was last seen wearing brown work boots, black Levi's jeans, a black T-shirt, a belt with a Leatherman tool on it, a watch and a chained wallet containing several hundred dollars. He has several tattoos including a rose on his right chest area and a skull with a snake on his upper arm. He smokes Camel cigarettes.
   Snohomish County Search and Rescue combed the trail area between the homes for clues ... with negative results.
   "We checked every one of those trails several times that following Saturday and Sunday," said the missing man's father, Kenneth Leopold Sr., in a phone interview. "And we're going out again this weekend with dogs. We're hoping the King County Search and Rescue will get involved. The thing is, we found nothing on the trails. And he's a smoker. We didn't even find any Camel cigarette butts."
   Nor did they notice any signs of a struggle.
   "He was a big boy and could defend himself if he had to, but it would have taken more than one person to get him down and drag him out," said Ken Leopold Sr., " ... unless they snuck up on him."
   According to Leopold Sr., his son - a welder, a mechanic, a jack-of-all-trades, really - was on unemployment. A Snohomish County Sheriff's Office press release stated that he did not file for unemployment during the past two weeks, even though it is his sole source of income.
   "He was working for a company that went under," his father said. "He really liked it there and I imagine (not working there) bothered him. He could have been depressed. He never told us much about what was going on in his life."
   It wasn't unusual for Leopold Jr. to leave on a Thursday or Friday and come back on a Sunday, his father said.
   "His friends would always give him a ride home," Leopold Sr. said. "He lost his license, but he was abiding by the rules. He was looking forward to paying for his tickets and getting his license back."
   But what triggered his parents' concern this particular weekend was that Leopold Jr. was not around to say good-bye to his son, who had joined the Army and was leaving for basic training Sunday, March 3.
   Apparently Leopold Jr. talked with his son fairly regularly and it was not in his nature to miss so important a good-bye.
   "(His son) called here to say good-bye and when Ken wasn't here, he said he'd call back. But he never called back," said Leopold Sr.
   Mr. and Mrs. Ken Leopold Sr. have not told their grandson of his father's disappearance. They wanted the young enlistee to turn his full attention to the task at hand, the Army.
   "Right now we're thinking it's a good thing they haven't found him," said Leopold Sr., meaning perhaps his son is just off somewhere and will make his way home one of these days.
   "We spent a bundle in fliers (describing Ken Jr. and his disappearance)," said his father. "We encased them in plastic and hung them at places like gas stations. We didn't get many hung in Woodinville, though. We ran out of fliers."
   Persons with knowledge of Ken Leopold's whereabouts are urged to call 911.