Eric Wayne Pyles

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3 AP
Top Row and Bottom Left: Eric, circa 2000;
Bottom Right: Age-progression to age 24 (circa 2012)


Vital Statistics at Time of Disappearance

  • Missing Since: December 12, 2000 from Union Township, Pennsylvania
  • Classification: Endangered Missing
  • Date Of Birth: February 20, 1988
  • Age: 12 years old
  • Height and Weight: 4'8, 95 pounds
  • Distinguishing Characteristics: Caucasian male. Blond hair, brown eyes. Eric's hair was collar-length at the time of his disappearance, much longer than pictured in the photograph above. He has a scar near the right side of his waistline. Eric may use the aliases Nick Cagnow and/or Nick Seaboy. Some agencies may spell his first name "Erik" and his middle name "Wayna."
  • Clothing/Jewelry Description: A gray sweatshirt with an image of a deer imprinted on the front, light blue jeans or pants, black sneakers, and a blue flannel jacket.
  • Medical Conditions: Eric had significant behavioral and emotional problems in 2000 and had previously been hospitalized for them.
  • Bar

    Details of Disappearance

    Eric exited his Northern Lebanon school bus near the intersection of US Route 22 and Pennsylvania Route 72 in Union Township, Pennsylvania on December 12, 2000. He was last seen walking behind the Jonestown Bible Church, towards a wooded area near U. S. Route 22, at approximately 2:30 p.m. He was carrying a Washington Redskins book bag at the time of his disappearance. Eric has never been heard from again.

    Eric and his younger brother lived with their older sister, Maria Custer, and her husband and three children on Awol Road in 2000. Their parents reside in Luray, Virginia. Custer took custody of the two boys after their parents allegedly neglected them. Custer stated both of her brothers had behavioral problems. Eric rebelled against Custer's rules and curfews by running away several times in the past, but he always returned by nightfall. Custer said that Eric used the first name "Nick" as an alias because he took the name while playing 'school' as a young child. He also told people he was from Cleona, Pennsylvania, but his sister reported that Eric was unfamiliar with the town. He has been known to hitchhike in the past.

    Custer enrolled Eric in counseling sessions after he moved to Pennsylvania. He was an inpatient at Philhaven Behavioral Healthcare Services two times, and Custer also attempted to have him placed in a residential treatment center to address his behavioral issues. Authorities said that there were unconfirmed sightings of Eric at the Mount Gretna Roller Rink, at a local mall and other areas in the vicinity after his disappearance. Search dogs tracked his scent to a densely wooded area near his home, but no trace of him could be found. His case remains unsolved.

    Custer has since remarried and taken the last name Fuhrman. She has passed a lie detector test in connection with Eric's disappearance and police do not believe she was involved in his disappearance or harmed him in any way before he vanished. Authorities investigated the possibility that Eric ran to the Shenandoah Valley area of Virginia where his parents and other relatives live. He had previously talked about going back to Virginia. Police questioned several of his family members there, but the interviews turned up no leads indicating Eric's whereabouts and there's no evidence that he ever arrived in Virginia.

    The Jonestown station of the Pennsylvania State Police is handling Eric's case.


    Investigating Agency
    If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:
    Pennsylvania State Police


    Source Information
    The National Center For Missing and Exploited Children
    Child Protection Education Of America
    Pennsylvania State Police
    The Evening Sun
    The Child Seek Network
    The Patriot-News
    Facebook Page for Eric Pyles


    Updated 7 times since October 12, 2004.

    Last updated July 25, 2017; two pictures added.

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