Richard Petrone: Missing Since February 19, 2005

Message from Richard Petrone Sr

To all who have visited and posted at this site since its inception I would like to say a few words about a matter that I have so far not discussed. But first I would like to thank Rolando (Lands) for all of his efforts and dedication on behalf of our family and his dear friend in establishing and maintaining this web site and providing a place for us to post our thoughts.

Throughout this nightmare ordeal I have often been asked what, if anything, is going on in terms of an investigation. The answer is a lot. I would have never thought such an effort would still be under way more than 3 years later. Not a week goes by without contact with some division of law enforcement both local and federal as well as private organizations and individuals who are actively involved in this case. The investigation is being pursued on numerous levels and in many states. The work is painstakingly difficult and slow. However during this period we have met a group of men who symbolize everything that is good about our country and in particular our law enforcement. They are men possessed of integrity, dedication, and devotion all too rarely seen in everyday life. And to a man they have promised that this case will not end until justice is served.

While we deal in the lost days, the holidays and special occasions that all too cruelly mark Richard’s absence, law enforcement operates on a different time frame. While we seek truth and justice as they do, they also accumulate the facts that will guarantee the successful prosecution of the individuals responsible for this crime. While we stress the fact that its now over 1300 days of living “normally” for these criminal scum, law enforcement reminds us that they will spend the rest of their pathetic lives in prison (hopefully thousands upon thousands of days) once this case is brought to trial.

Know that this case is being investigated intensely by the finest group of men we could hope for. We know that when we lay our heads down at night Richard is being well served. His day of reckoning will come. In the meantime, thank you for your posts. They are a positive force and we look forward to your thoughts and prayers, and especially your memories of Richard.
Richard Petrone Sr, November 11, 2008

August 29, 2008: Richard’s 39th birthday.

My gify to you…
“When i despair, i remember that all through history…the ways of truth and love have always won. …There have been tyrants, and murderers, and for a time they seem invincible..but in the end they always fail. Think of it always.” Mahatma Ghandi

To my dear nephew on his birthday… my gift to you is a simple prayer…may your heart and soul be at rest…possessing a peace and tranquility only few can own…may it be yours…i wish this for you.
luv aunt lisa, August 29, 2008

As we prepare to celebrate the 4th birthday without your smile…
“And even in our sleep pain that cannot forget falls drop by drop upon the heart, and in our own despair, against our will, comes wisdom to us by the awful grace of God.” Aeschylus.

As we prepare to celebrate the 4th birthday without your smile the wisdom that the Greeks spoke of has not yet come. The solitary question “Why” dominates most days. I think I know the answer but the proof is slow to come. The truth is obvious except to those who choose to be blind. Truth is eternal. Proof is a man made term. Faith is what keeps us moving forward. Faith in the man working this case for over 3 years without giving up. Faith in their efforts and dedication and integrity. Hope is another matter altogether. Although we remain hopeful there are times our spirits sag. You start to feel, as if,

“Hell’s brewin, a dark sun’s on the rise
The storm will blow thru bye bye
House is on fire, viper’s in the grass
A little vengeance too shall pass
This too shall pass, yeah I’m gonna pray
Right now all I’ve got is this lonesome day

On days like this I turn to my music or my books to try and gain some insight or understanding. I know evil exists and shit happens. But you were such a gentle soul. A good soul. A moral person. But that was not enough. I know the good die young. The highways’ jammed with broken heroes. And maybe it’s what Hemmingway wrote in A Farewell to Arms: “If people bring so much courage to this world the world has to kill them to break them, so of course it kills them. The world breaks everyone and afterward many are strong at the broken places. But those that will not break it kills. It kills the very good and the very gentle and the very brave impartially. If you are none of these you can be sure it will you too but there will be no special hurry.”

I’ve been listening to Springsteen a lot these last few days. It brings me closer to you but it’s a sword that cuts both ways. There’s the many memories of all the shows we saw together – and the ticket stubs you saved – and I can see you so clearly in my mind and your expression and excitement when certain of our favorites were played. And for a moment or two I can hold onto that warm feeling, remembering the rides to and from the shows and the talks afterward. And then reality steps in and I realize that is gone forever.

Whenever I feel lost I turn to the poets, the people who with words try to make some sense of our time here on earth. Not surprisingly Springsteen has been a constant source. He recently wrote about the death of a friend

When they built you brother
they turned this dust to gold
When they built you brother
they broke the mold
They say you can’t take it with you
but I think that they’re wrong
All I know is I woke up this morning
and something big was gone
Gone into that dark ether
where you’re still young and hard and cold
Just like when they built you brother
and broke the mold
Richard Petrone, August 29, 2008

Happy birthday…
Richard – Happy Birthday to you. We will never forget your endearing smile, your warmth, and wonderful personality. You are the best!
Love, Rosemarie Bonavitacola, August 29, 2008

3 years and still missing

3 Years Later, Area Couple Still Missing
February 19, 2008. “I need to know what happened to my father,” Angela said. “A little piece of my heart will always be gone until we find out what happened.” Petrone’s family is sticking together on the somber three-year anniversary of Richard’s disappearance and said the pain never goes away.
Double click image to watch the video or here to read the CBS 3 report
Flash Player required to watch videos

Michael Smerconish: The “Missing” Ingredient
Michael Smerconish asks why some cases, including the Richard Petrone – Danielle Imbo case, receive less attention than other missing person cases.
Read the Philadelphia Daily News report here, February 21, 2008

3 years later, case of missing couple still haunts
“This is one of those cases that kind of haunts you,” recalled Sgt. Tim Cooney, who was part of the city’s investigation in 2005. “If it was a random act, there’s usually some evidence, whether it’s a car left behind, or, God forbid, a victim, or a handbag thrown aside.”
Read the Inquirer Report here, February 19, 2008

Richard Petrone’s disappearance was a targeted event
February 7, 2008. The father of missing man Richard Petrone stopped by Good Day to talk about the new leads in the case of his missing son and his girlfriend Danielle Imbo. Petrone says he and many others suspected the disappearance was a targeted event, and not a random act of violence.
Double click image to watch the video
Flash Player required to watch videos

Were they murdered for money?
February 6, 2008. Today, for the first time, the FBI said the evidence seems to suggest someone wanted them dead and paid for the killing. The FBI said that an arrest is not imminent. They did confirm that the investigation has taken them beyond Philadelphia and New Jersey, and into other states.
Double click image to watch the video or here to read the 6 ABC report
Flash Player required to watch videos

Richard Petrone, Sr. Interview
February 6, 2008. The father of a man who went missing almost three years ago speaks to Fox Philadelphia’s Dave Schratwieser. Richard Petrone says the FBI is now considering what he’s believed all along: his son was likely caught up in a murder for hire plot.
Double click the image to watch the full interview, FOX 29
Flash Player required to watch videos

Feds Think Couple’s Disappearance Was a Hit
February 6, 2008. “The mysterious disappearance of a local couple on South Street three years ago was the result of a murder-for-hire, sources tell Fox 29 News. Sources say investigators believe Petrone and Imbo were headed to Imbo’s Mount Laurel condominium when they were abducted and killed by one or more killers who knew what they were doing.
Double click image to watch the video or here to read the FOX 29 report
Flash Player required to watch videos

New Information In Disappearance Of Richard Petrone
February 6, 2008. “As a result of the three-year investigation and all of the leads we have followed up and pursued, we are now classifying this as a murder-for-hire investigation,” said Jayne Challman with the F.B.I.
Double click image to watch the video or here to read the CBS 3 report
Flash Player required to watch videos

Was couple’s disappearance murder for hire?
February 6, 2008. “We have continued to actively investigate this case and have taken all tips and run them down to their logical conclusion,” FBI Special Agent Jerri Williams said yesterday. “One of the leads has led us to pursue a possible murder-for-hire scenario.”
Click here to read the report, Danielle Camilli, Burlington County Times

New appeal for help finding couple
February 1, 2008. Authorities have made a new appeal to find out what happened to Richard Petrone and Danielle Imbo. Their disappearance remains one of the major mysteries for Philadelphia Police. “I need closure. I want to bury my son,” said a weeping Marge Petrone.
Double click image to watch the video or here to read the 6 ABC report ( Flash Player required to watch videos)