What Happened to Matthew Cantrell?
Tim Cantrell found out that his son, who had recently moved to Portland from Eugene, had worked a shift at the Delta Park Shari’s restaurant and then taken the MAX to downtown Portland. Matthew bought a gift for his girlfriend in Pioneer Courthouse Square and then stopped in at the H2O Martini Bar.
Matthew told the bartender at H2O that he would be back, before returning to the room he rented from a friend on N. Winchell St. Matthew had been in Portland for two weeks, planning to work and earn money to complete his education at the University of Oregon. Portland seemed like a big city to the young man and he wanted to go out exploring downtown.
About 10pm he called a friend from a payphone on N. Lombard St. He asked his friend to go downtown for a drink. His friend declined and that was the last anyone heard from Matthew until his body was found by a tugboat operator in the Willamette near NW Front and Kittridge more than a month later.
Tim Cantrell stayed in Portland as long as he could. The night before he had to leave someone broke into his pickup truck and stole his missing son’s snowboard. Portland has been very hard on the Cantrell family.
A year later Portland Crimestoppers is offering a $1,000 reward for information on this death, which police say is suspicious. No one believes that Matthew killed himself, but police said there were no signs of trauma on the body and they refuse to release the cause of death.
It’s a classic tale: the “clean-cut, All American boy” lonely and curious in a new city went out to explore and found more than he bargained for. Some one knows what happened to Matthew Cantrell.