Book written about former Alexandria anchor who disappeared
Despite the fact that 16 years have passed since her disappearance, the case still draws a lot of local interest. Huisentruit started her broadcast career at KSAX-TV in Alexandria.
Now, a new book released in April presents possible scenarios about what may have happened to her.
Author Beth Bednar describes Dead Air: The Disappearance of Jodi Huisentruit as a recap of Huisentruit's disappearance, but she goes further, investigating the people involved and the interrelated stories going on at the time she disappeared.
"In the book I talk about a number of possible theories on her disappearance," she said.
"There are a couple things that struck me as very strange," Bednar told the Echo Press last week, "For example, a friend of Jodi's in some of her social circles, died mysteriously - he was found dead in his farm home from a gunshot wound.
"At that time, in the Mason City community, there were a lot of drug-related disappearances of key witnesses in drug cases. Maybe [Jodi] was unwillingly pulled into that, knowing something she wasn't supposed to know," Bednar said.
She also noted a man whom Huisentruit spent a lot of time with in her social life; from the mid-1980s to 2002, that man has been linked in first person to five people who died mysteriously.
"Now, I'm not saying he did it, but I'm saying this person has been associated with five unresolved cases... that alone is a big part of the book."
Bednar said she believes Huisentruit was accosted by someone she knew.
"My fondest wish is this book will cause someone to come forward and say, 'I know something,' or something will happen to help find her remains or some key piece of evidence," she said. "I would love that."
Back in 1995, when Huisentruit disappeared, Bednar was also a TV news anchor at a competing station in Mason City.
"This book has been in my heart for a long time because I remember the day she disappeared so clearly. It punched me in the gut, so to speak, because I lived that kind of life, it struck me as so terrible."
Bednar said she hopes the book's readers walk away with a sense of the legacy Huisentruit left.
"It honors her in a very big way," she said.
Bednar will be at Cherry Street Books in Alexandria on Thursday, July 7 at 7 p.m. to sign books and chat about the story.