By Max Fontaine | Hard news beat reporter
A longtime mystery of a longtime-missing Bass Lake-area man has mystified authorities for many decades. He is now presumed dead, after years of strange coincidence and squandered opportunities.
Wilbur Alexandria was last seen June 25, 1936, while fishing near Trout Lane. He was 45 at the time. His then-wife, Anna, notified police the next day, and the search was on.
But it proved fruitless. Last week, Bass Lake Police Authority declared Mr. Alexandria’s death “pretty much a sure thing at this point.”
Anna remarried in 1941. Her second husband, Quinn Quiggler, passed away 78 days after the betrothal. She married a third time in 1951. This marriage ended in divorce. Anna was found dead in 1963 in a dressing room prior to her fourth wedding ceremony. No witnesses remain alive, and church documents were destroyed in a fire on Nov. 22 of that year. Initially considered arson, charges were eventually dropped. In 1964, Anna’s final fiance moved to California, where he was immediately reported missing.
Neither Wilbur nor Anna nor any of Anna’s spouses have any direct descendants, and no close relatives remain in the Bass Lake area.
Anna Alexandria was briefly considered a suspect in Wilbur’s death, but “it couldn’t be proven,” according to a 1970 Beacon interview with then-Bass Lake Police Squad chief Robert “RT” Trebor.
Trebor died of natural causes 78 hours after that interview hit the newstand. Author of that Q&A, Beacon correspondent Jim “James” Brown, died in a suspicious pressroom accident in 1971.
The case is considered closed, according to police.
“There was no foul play involved. Probably,” said Chief Tug McNabb. “And to be honest, the files were taking up way too much space at the precinct.”