Almost two years ago to the day, Alan Patterson raced down the trailhead at Sauk Mountain praying to find his mom lost, but alive.
“I just remember how frantic everything was,” he said.
Today, he walks down that same trail simply hoping for a clue from her killer that betrays where the body lies.
“Over time you have to come to terms with the situation,” said Patterson. “This is where this road had led me. This is what I've got to do.”
Patti Krieger disappeared from Skagit County's Sauk Mountain while hiking with her boyfriend and some acquaintances on October 2, 2010. An exhaustive police search turned up nothing.
Krieger’s family members are left trying to make peace with the probability that they'll never see her again.
“Sometimes you have to just find your own little corner and be in it, and deal with it,” said the missing woman's brother, Steve Aungst.
“It’s very frustrating,” said Krieger’s sister, Nancy Peterson. “You come to a point where you feel like you’ve just got to know. But there are no answers.”
Police aren't releasing any new information about what happened on the mountain that day, but family members say they've heard the same story over and over again from multiple sources. All of it pointing to a very ugly end.
Krieger's boyfriend, Larry Pressley, currently incarcerated at Walla Walla for assaulting a police officer, was the last person to see her alive.
Patterson said “an argument ensued, he pushed her down and broke her back. They took her to a cabin and kept her there for several days. They beat her, assaulted her and eventually killed her and disposed of the body. I've gotten that detailed account from three or four different people.”
Police won't comment on what the family has been told.
For now, Krieger's family continues down a seemingly endless path -- hoping for a breakthrough that will shine light on what happened to their loved one.
More information on the case: www.findpattikrieger.com