WHEATON, Minn. — One year ago was the last time anyone saw 68-year-old Terry McCoy alive. It was in the city of Wheaton, a Minnesota town about 30 miles southeast of Wahepton, N.D.
More than two weeks later, his body was found in a river about 20 miles from his home. According to his daughter, his clothes had been removed. According to public records, Terry McCoy died from a gunshot wound to the head.
It was an unanswered daily phone call from Carrie McCoy to her dad's home that started the yearlong nightmare for the McCoy family. On June 18, 2020, her dad was reported missing by a couple buying his home.
"I found out by calling my dad, and a police officer answered the phone," Carrie McCoy said.
In the coming days, hundreds from the community of 1,400 would search his 40-acre property and other parts of the area. The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension took a look inside the home after his daughter said blood was found.
During a June 2020 interview with WDAY, Sheriff Trevor Wright said there was nothing suspicious about McCoy's disappearance.
"There was a broken chair that he might have been sleeping in, and he may have fallen and bumped his head," Wright said in the interview.
But McCoy's daughter said she told the sheriff there's no way her dad walked away. He had a medical rod in his back. His house was fully equipped with handicap accessible amenities.
"(It) made me sick to my stomach," Carrie McCoy said. "Dad couldn't even get his mail; he would drive to his mailbox."
According to Carrie McCoy, after 19 days, Terry McCoy's nude body was found in a remote section of the Mustinka River by some teenage girls. She wishes the sheriff would have listened to her from the start.
"Maybe he'd still be alive if Trevor did his job right. It's sickening. It's maddening," she said.
The Minnesota BCA has taken over the case. Carrie McCoy has nothing but praise for the agents trying to find her dad's killer. She said every day is tormenting, wondering who killed her dad. He was a man who was always with one of his six grandkids and usually had a fishing rod in his hand.
"I don't think anyone had hatred toward him," Carrie McCoy said. "It's hard for me to wrap my head around who would have done something this heinous."
Carrie McCoy is offering a $5,000 reward to end her family's nightmare and get justice for her dad. She said the family can't begin to grieve until they get justice.
The Minnesota BCA said it's against state law to talk about the case. Numerous calls, texts and emails to the Traverse County Sheriff's Office were not returned.