John Conaway

John Conaway (Courtesy Iowa Dept. of Public Safety)

John Steven Conaway

Missing Person

Age at Report: 36
September 15, 1961
160 lbs.
Height: 5′ 10″
Race: White
Hair: Brown
Incident Type:
Disability – physical / mental
Endangered Missing
Missing From:
Council Bluffs, IA
Pottawattamie County
Case #
Missing Since:
February 9, 1998


Case summary compiled by Jody Ewing
Pottawattamie County in Iowa

Pottawattamie County in Iowa

John Steven “Steve” Conaway, 36, of Council Bluffs, Iowa, went missing sometime on Monday night, February 9, 1998. He was reported missing to the Council Bluffs Police Department on February 11, 1998.

Conaway was last seen between 10 and 10:30 p.m. on Feb. 9 at Buffalo Joe’s Food & Spirits, located near Rosenblatt Stadium in downtown Omaha, Nebraska. Conaway had gone there with a friend and had a few beers, and seemed to be in good spirits at the time.

Council Bluffs in Pottawattamie County, IA

Council Bluffs in Pottawattamie County

He departed Buffalo Joe’s driving his gold four-door 1989 Ford Taurus, which has Iowa license plate number 977-CLN. He has not been seen since then, and his vehicle also remains missing.

Farnerbocken, a distributing company where Conaway worked as a sales representative, reported him missing after he failed to appear for work for several days.

When Conaway’s parents went to check his home, nothing suggested he’d taken anything and gone on a trip. They found his twice-daily insulin injection medicine at the residence, but missing were the clothes he’d worn the night he disappeared, his work computer and vehicle. 

Everything pointed to Conaway never having made it home that night. 

At the time of his disappearance, Conaway was described as a 5’10” white male weighing about 160 pounds. He has blue eyes, brown hair, and had a mustache and goatee.

Gold 4-door Ford Taurus

John Conaway was last seen driving a gold 4-door 1989 Ford Taurus similar to this vehicle.

He was last seen wearing a collared vertically-striped white long-sleeved button-down shirt and tan pants.

Family members said it was uncharacteristic for him to leave without any warning and that they are baffled by his disappearance.

Council Bluffs police initially issued an attempt-to-locate on Conaway before later changing his classification to Endangered Missing; Conaway is a diabetic and insulin-dependent.

Family petitions court to establish presumption of death

On Dec. 11, 2018, Conaway’s parents, John A. Conaway and Donna M. Conaway, filed a petition in the Iowa District Court for Pottawattamie County to establish the presumption of their son’s death. 

The Conaway’s stated they’d had no contact with him and had no knowledge of anyone else having had contact with him since on or about February 9, 1998.

The action was filed asking the Court to make a determination that John Steven Conaway is presumed dead. 

In his instructions to jury members, Fourth Judicial District Judge Jeffrey L. Larson told the seven jury members that it was necessary for only five jurors to agree upon the Interrogatory. The verdict then would be signed by all jurors who agreed. 

Information Needed

If you have any information about John Conaway’s mysterious disappearance, please contact the Council Bluffs Police Department at 712-328-5737.



One Response to John Conaway

  1. Patrick Kerrigan says:

    I would assume that since his vehicle is also missing, that most likely he and the vehicle are in a body of water in the area. Supposedly there are about 700 cases of missing persons, whose vehicles are missing

    Thanks to various dive teams around the country, they are helping close out some of these cases. Vehicles have been found in a number of different t bodies of water, from lakes, rivers, streams, creeks, retention ponds

    It would be interesting to determine what route he would have have driven from where he was last seen to his home. Then look for various bodies of water, along the route.

    The use of a drone might be useful in flying over the route. Then using side-scanning sonar to look for possible targets.

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