SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- KGO radio host Ronn Owens recalled a fond memory of his longtime colleague and friend Ray Taliaferro during an interview with ABC 7 News on Monday. For years, the two men raised millions of dollars for the leukemia society on ABC 7 News.
"He was really a professional, quality guy from A to Z," Owens said. "It's tough to use the word was."
Taliaferro was found dead in a wooded area in Paducah, Kentucky by two teenagers on Sunday. His son Raphael received the news an hour before he got to town to look for his father.
"He shouldn't have died by himself, in the cold, in the dirt," Raphael Taliaferro said.
According to police, Taliaferro and his new wife were looking at a property in southern Illinois on November 10th when he disappeared.
He showed up in Paducah, Kentucky that same day. Taliaferro then stopped at a bank, a pizza shop and finally a church- where he was last seen.
Police said his wife didn't initially tell them her husband was suffering from dementia, so there was no silver alert.
"That's a red flag there, but then again she could be scared," Raphael Taliaferro said.
"Normally if someone reports someone missing and says they were diagnosed with Dementia or Alzheimer's, some type of thing like, that automatically makes it a heightened response," Massac County Investigator Chad Kaylor said.
Police said the FBI is involved in the case because it crosses state lines and that Taliaferro's body did not have any obvious signs of trauma.
Taliaferro's son said the couple's marriage license was found in the rental car his father parked outside the bank. The two were married in June.
Taliaferro was 79 and his wife is in her 50's. Neither Taliaferro's son nor police have heard from his wife recently.
"I think there's a concern about who she is," Raphael Taliaferro said. "Nobody knows her, or some of the decisions she's made in this whole situation."
Police say it's too early in the investigation to treat the case as anything but a death investigation. The autopsy is scheduled for tomorrow.