Gabby Petito: Missing

Twenty two-year old Gabby Petito and fiancé, Brian Laundrie, embarked on a cross-country road trip together to celebrate their engagement, and it quickly took a turn for the worst.


The cars fly by on the road of the West Coast as everyone lives their separate and peaceful lives. Except, for Petito and Laundrie, who bicker and argue in the car and get an emergency phone call called on them because of sight of abuse in the vehicle.

Sun rays are beaming. Hippie music playing. Seatbelts squeaking. The show is on the road. Gabby Petito and and Brian Laundrie were looking forward to a thrilling and adventurous road trip through the West Coast and they planned to visit national and state parks. Petito made sure to keep in touch with family members due to their expeditions in dangerous and deserted locations. On this trip, however, that communication line was cut in August.

Riding in an RV is a life-changing experience that leaves you grateful and wanting more. They key to travel is sitting in the ignition. Petito and Laundrie’s mode of transportation was a van.

The timeline begins on August 12, 2021. Utah police encountered the couple and it was said that they were involved in a quarrel of some sort. Petito and Laundrie were said to have been involved in a physical fight after an argument, however they were reported to be engaged to each other and claimed to be in love.  At this point, the officer had suggested they stay separate for the night and they did as they were told. According to CNN, Officer Daniel Robbins wrote, “After evaluating the totality of the circumstances, I do not believe the situation escalated to the level of a domestic assault as much as that of a mental health crisis.” Even though they were apart, they each had a cell phone in case of emergency circumstances. CNN also stated that there were reports from a caller to 911 about sightings  “the gentlemen slapping the girl,” in a white van with a Florida license plate. The caller said they stopped, and according to the same article, the caller described the situation as: “They ran up and down the sidewalk. He proceeded to hit her, hopped in the car, and they drove off.”

On August 17, Laundrie flew from Salt Lake City to Tampa according to their family attorney. His reasoning for returning home, says CNN, was he, “flew home to obtain some items and empty and close the storage unit to save money as they contemplated extending the road trip,” and on August 23, Laundrie returned to Salt Lake City and Petito.

The leaves are silent regardless of the windy weather and the air is quiet except for the howls. Petito was left in a wooded area when she was tragically killed and the forest is dangerous.

A few days following, on August 27, a couple on vacation from Louisiana reported a sighting of the couple and that they were engaged in a “commotion” as they exited the Merry Piglets Tex-Mex restaurant. The witnesses stated that Petito was crying and that Laundrie was angered and lashing out on the staff. There was no video surveillance and the restaurant manager simply described what she saw and refused to give more information.

The story gets more twisted as we approach the last week of August, also the last week Petito’s family had contact with her. The family says their last communication with Petito was on August 30, but it is believed that the message sent to them was not sent by her. The timeline given by the family shows that there were texts between Petito and her mother up until August 3o, where the message was, as stated by CNN, was: “No service in Yosemite.”

In September, a woman claimed, and announced publicly, that she and her boyfriend provided a ride for Laundrie on August 29,  but Laundrie claimed that during that time he was alone and camping for days because Petito was working on social media posts in their van. There was a video series on the app Tiktok, a social media platform where people post short videos, and Miranda Baker said that she and her boyfriend had given Laundrie a ride in the evening when he was hitchhiking in Wyoming. She said that Laundrie told them he was camping at Grand Teton National Park. However, Laundrie realized Baker was going to Jackson Hole instead of Jackson, and angerly got out of the car near Jackson Dam. A seasonal resident of Wyoming, Norma Jean Jalovec, said she gave Laundrie a ride and picked him up near Jackson Lake Dam on August 29, and brought him to Spread Creek, a dispersed camping area, Petito’s remains were found here later.

Winding roads are leading down the canyons as you pass through the luxurious scenery of Utah. The seventies music floods the background noise to where you can’t even hear a pot hole in the road. Gabby passed through this area and went down these winding roads, but her story ended differently.

On September 1, Laundrie returned to their home and the vehicle they were in was recovered at the home and the Laundrie family went camping the following weekend. On September 11, after not hearing from Petito, her family reports her missing. When police went to Laundrie’s home, CNN said they, “were essentially handed the information to their attorney,” says the police spokesperson. In the following weeks, there is no contact between the Petito and Laundrie family. Shortly after, police were called to Laundrie’s house because Brian had gone missing.

Laundrie remains missing and is still being searched for. However, in this time the cause of Petito’s death has been determined as strangulation. Authorities have not yet connected Laundrie to Petito’s death. On October 21, the FBI connects human remains found in the Carlton Reserve area to Brian Laundrie and confirmed that the remains were his.

Grand Canyon is a magical place where you can see beyond and infinitely. Petito and Laundrie watched from lookouts together before their disagreement.

The story continues to unravel daily, as more information is uncovered and found. There are still so many questions, which has been acknowledged by authorities and people speaking about the case. The case is not closed yet, and won’t be for a while because of the mystery surrounding it.