Search for missing Brownsville woman continues after pickup pulled from Willamette River

After snapping a cable, the tow truck successful pulled a maroon Ford F150 back up to the road around 12:30 p.m. Wednesday.

CORVALLIS, Ore. – The search for a missing Brownsville woman continues Wednesday after crews pulled her pickup truck out of the Willamette River and found that no one was inside the vehicle.

Sue Durheim was reported missing Monday after she didn’t show up to work, and missed some appointments throughout the day.

On Tuesday, family members reported seeing some evidence that a vehicle went into the river along Highway 20 near the Hewlett Packard campus, which is along the route Durheim takes to work.

The Benton County Sheriff’s Office confirmed later that evening that her pickup was in the water. They suspended the recovery effort for the night, and recovered the pickup Wednesday.

"There's three of the four windows broken out," Undersheriff Greg Ridler said. "The water is very fast, very swift. The truck went down the river quite a ways, it's very easy to guess that she got out of the vehicle during the roll down the river or when in the river. But right now we don't have anything for sure."

Investigators believe the Ford F150 that Durheim was driving crashed into the Willamette River.

Ridler said finding the truck empty has been hard for both Durheim's family as well as the deputies and divers who have worked to locate her.

"It's very difficult. You get a situation you've been working on for a couple of days. You hope for a final resolution, and we're not done yet. We still have job to do," he said. "It's possible we will never find the body and that would be very unfortunate. But right now I'm confident we will give it our best effort."

Authorities are meeting to plan the next phase of the search.


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