Monday, April 30, 2007

What Happened to Matthew Cantrell?

It’s been over a year since Matthew Cantrell was found dead, floating in the Willamette River. Before that was an agonizing month of searching for the 25-year old Portland newcomer. That month, Matthew’s father Tim drove in from Casper, WY to search for his son. Tim spent two weeks putting up fliers and talking to people who might know something about what happened to his son.

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.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

There is nothing in this world worse than having to bury your child. Knowing that he was murdered is all the more heartbreaking. Someone does know what happened. Please call the police and tell them. You don't have to give your name. Be a hero to Matt's family and give them some peace. Help them heal. Let Matt's family know what happened to their only son, their first born. Thank you for any help you can provide. Matt's mom, Kathy Cantrell

11:55 AM  
Blogger Candi said...

Dear Kate and Tim ,

My heart goes out to you, I can't imagin what could have happened to Matt. My husband lost a cousin in the same way many many years ago, in the Columbia Slew. I only wish there was something , anything we could do for you. I don't live in Portland anymore but live in Mc Minnville,which is about an hour and a half away. If you can think of something please let me know. You will be in our thoughts and prayers. I too am a Cantrell, that is my maiden name. My email addy is
PS JD >>>> I wrote a comment in "Slabtown" and have not seen it or heard from you , could you please Email me ?????????

5:15 PM  
Blogger Kylie Cantrell said...

This post is incorrect. My mother went with my father in search of my brother. Portland did not believe us he was missing and refused to help us search for him due to it being a waste of time! Portland is a horrible place to live or be in. If you or family are missing good luck getting any help before the body is found!!!

10:49 AM  

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