Tanya Rider: What Happened to Her? Where Are Tom and Tanya Rider Now?

In September 2007, Tanya Rider was observed leaving her night shift at work and heading home, but she never arrived. Due to their hectic and demanding schedules, Tanya and her husband often went days without communication. It was only after two days that he realized no one had seen his wife during that time. He promptly contacted the police, but in the absence of clear signs of foul play, they considered Tanya to be an adult woman capable of going wherever she pleased. In the episode ‘Disappeared: No Exit,’ the investigation delves into the case to uncover whether and when Tanya was located and the circumstances surrounding her disappearance.

Tanya Rider Went Missing On Her Way Home From Work

Tanya Rider maintained an intense work schedule, juggling two jobs. The 33-year-old worked the overnight shift as a stocker at Fred Meyer, while during the day, she was employed at a fitting store in Bellevue, Washington. Similarly, her 39-year-old husband, Tom Rider, held two jobs as they both strived to build their dream home. Their goal was to work hard, accumulate sufficient funds, and eventually lead a tranquil life. Residing in Maple Valley, Washington, their busy routines often led to days passing without the opportunity to exchange greetings due to their demanding schedules.

On the evening of September 19, 2007, the couple managed to spend some family time before Tanya embarked on her night shift at Fred Meyer. After completing her shift, she was observed leaving the premises in her car at approximately 9 am. However, she never returned home. On September 22, 2007, Tanya’s employer in Bellevue reached out to Tom, expressing concern as she had failed to appear for her scheduled shift. Tom attempted to contact her, but the phone went unanswered. Upon returning home, he searched for her, yet there was no trace of Tanya.

Tom promptly dialed 911 to report his wife’s disappearance; however, due to the disparity in locations between where Tanya was last seen and their residence, his call was transferred multiple times. After finally reaching an operator, Tom was advised to check jails, hospitals, and morgues before seeking further assistance. Following the operator’s instructions, he made the necessary checks. In the evening, Tom called 911 again, providing Tanya’s information. The operator entered the details into a nationwide computer system, enabling alerts in case of any identified activity.

The police, as is standard in such cases, began investigating Tom. The King County Sheriff’s Department searched Tom’s residence. Despite Tom’s cooperation, they conveyed that Tanya, being an adult woman, might have chosen to leave on her own. In the episode, Tom expresses a perception of a certain casualness and lack of seriousness in the search for Tanya. He also mentioned that they directed all their efforts toward holding him responsible for her disappearance. However, he was determined to find his wife and kept looking for her, setting up flyers and talking to people on his own.

On September 27, the police inquired about Tanya’s bank accounts, and Tom mentioned that they both had two joint accounts. However, there was confusion when the police asked if she was the sole account holder, to which Tom initially responded affirmatively. Later, after some activity was detected in these accounts, Tom clarified that he also had access to the accounts and had mixed up his answers. In response to this information, the police obtained cell phone records to trace Tanya’s location. The police decided to bring him in for a polygraph test, and he readily agreed.

On September 28, the police pinpointed a location based on her phone’s signal and discovered Tanya’s car overturned in a ditch, lying on the driver’s side in a ravine. Remarkably, Tanya was still inside the car, exhibiting some movement. She had sustained significant injuries, including a broken collarbone, dislocated shoulder, kidney damage, and a severely injured leg, but she was alive. Due to the lack of food and water, her organs had begun to shut down. Tanya was airlifted to a hospital, where she was stabilized.

Tom and Tanya Rider are Rebuilding Their Lives Today

In September 2010, Tom and Tanya Rider filed a lawsuit against King County, alleging negligence. They argued that the county had a responsibility to care for its citizens and had failed to do so in Tanya’s case, resulting in significant harm to both of them. In March 2012, the case was dismissed. In 2011, Tanya chose to share her harrowing experience by penning a book titled ‘Missing Without a Trace: 8 Days of Horror.’ In an interview, she revealed that the details of those eight days were fuzzy, including her attempts to free herself from the seatbelt and reach her phone.

Tanya expressed the overwhelming fear of facing death in those circumstances. Writing the book served as a therapeutic outlet for Tanya, helping her confront and process her emotions. She said, “I think that it’s been really hard to understand the recovery process especially if you don’t remember something, but what I’ve learned that’s most important is that you need to face it. I tried to bury it, but it’s not the way to handle things. You have to take pride in what you’ve gone through and become stronger from it.”

Tanya and Tom temporarily put their dream of a home on hold, choosing to concentrate on rebuilding and repairing their lives. After enduring such a traumatic experience, they required time to recharge and recuperate. We wish them all the best in achieving their aspirations in the future.

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