Roger Ellison, left, pictured at a ski race before he disappeared on Feb. 10, 1981. Photo courtesy of Kanda Ford Carey.
Prior to his disappearance, Roger Ellison was reportedly going to the private home of teacher John Pash to turn in his homework so he could get time off to go skiing, according to police officials.
Pash taught social studies and coached wrestling at Cedaredge High School in 1981 – the same year Roger disappeared.
Roger ski raced for the Powderhorn Racing Club, a private organization that was not a school sponsored sport. At the time of his disappearance, Roger was a Class B racer in the United States Ski Association. He was working towards his Class A certification which might have landed him an invite into the more competitive regional races.
“Roger was the kind of kid you wanted on your team because he was so committed,” said Mike Sutherland, a former professional ski racer and Roger’s ski coach. “Whatever you asked him to do or try, he would give it a shot. He wanted to ski faster, and faster and faster.”
The Powderhorn Racing Club trained and skied on weekends. In fact, Roger rarely missed school. If Roger was gone, it was on the weekends, according to Roger’s older sister, Becky Ellison Livingston, a former U.S. Ski Team member.
Investigators became concerned when things didn’t add up.
If Roger was rarely gone from school, why did he go to the Pash residence to turn in his homework? Why didn’t he have similar arrangements with his other teachers?
Roger’s father, Ernest Ellison, allegedly confronted Pash and told him that Roger was not bringing his homework to his house and that he was only to see Roger in school, according to unconfirmed reports.
“My father had a notion about Pash from day one,” said Ellison Livingston.
Ernest Ellison died six months after Roger disappeared without ever knowing what happened to his son. Pash allegedly visited the Ellison home shortly after Ernest died to deliver the startling news that Roger was suicidal.
The timing of the announcement was suspicious.
Was Pash trying to avoid a confrontation with Roger’s father who suspected him in the disappearance of his son or was it a deliberate attempt to mislead the investigation? Do you have direct knowledge of this case? I urge you to contact me. I don’t need your name, just your information. Join the discussion and post your comments to my blog or click on the Contact page to send me an email.
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