Peggy Cottrell (Courtesy Iowa Department of Public Safety)

Peggy Cottrell (Courtesy Iowa Department of Public Safety)

Peggy Ann Cottrell

Missing Person

NAME: Peggy Ann Cottrell
October 26, 1934
167 lbs.
Disability – physical / mental
MISSING FROM: Marshalltown, IA
Marshall County
May 26, 2001


Case summary compiled by Jody Ewing
Marshall County in Iowa
Marshall County in Iowa
Marshalltown in Marshall CountyMarshalltown in Marshall County

Peggy Ann Cottrell resided at the Southridge Nursing Home in Marshalltown, Iowa. A relative dropped her off at the facility at approximately 6:30 p.m. on May 26, 2001, and Cottrell was last seen running away from the home only minutes later.

Authorities believe she left of her own accord, and said she had no history of dementia.

Cottrell was last seen wearing a white sweater with a pink and blue design and dark-colored slacks. She is described as a white female, 66 years of age at time of disappearance, 5’07” and weighing 167 pounds. She has black hair and brown eyes.

“We talked with the family members at the time and they said she was in a good mood,” Police Chief Jack McAllister said in a 2008 story about the case.

A fisherman discovered Cottrell’s purse along the banks of the Iowa River several weeks after she was reported missing. Her ID and cash were inside the handbag.

Peggy Cottrell (Courtesy Iowa Department of Public Safety)

Peggy Cottrell (Courtesy Iowa Department of Public Safety)

“We worked a lot on that and we could never know exactly what happened to her,” McAllister told the Times-Republican in an October 2011 interview. “To this day we don’t know where she went.”

Cottrell is in need of medication for unspecified reasons. She received her last dose at noon on the day of her disappearance. If she does not take her medicine as directed, she may become depressed or confused.

Cottrell’s ears are pierced and she wears eyeglasses. She may use the last name Dickenson and/or Rowan.

Her case remains unsolved.

Information Needed

If you have any information concerning Peggy Cottrell’s unsolved disappearance please contact the Marshalltown Police Department at 641-754-5725.


12 Responses to Peggy Cottrell

  1. Patrick Kerrigan says:

    It seems odd, that she does not have dementia, but without medication, she becomes confused and depressed. I wonder why she was in a nursing home. Also, where did she live prior to being admitted. Also, how far away is the Iowa River, from where the nursing home is.

    Was, there any strange or odd behavior before she disappeared. She could have amnesia, and not have recgnized the nursing home. It might have seemrd strange to her, and fled before getting in trouble.

    • Patrick Kerrigan says:

      I was wondering how far away is the Iowa River, either from the town, or the nursing home. Also, what is the reputation of the home. Also, what amount f searching was done at the time. Also, the alias last names, are a concern, unless they are her maiden name, and she was married and then divorced.

      She could have been found, but being confused about her identity. A woman missing from Sullivan County, in New York for a bunch of years was found alive in a Lowell, Mass, nursing home.

      it appears that the remains of a woman, that matched her description were found by NYSP. They contacted the sheriff’s police. They dug up their case file, and rechecked her SSN, and found a woman in the nursing home, with a different name but the same SSN.

      They visited her and showed the picture in their files and recognized herself. So, how many other cases out there could be cleared by the search of SS records.

      • Patrick Kerrigan says:

        I searched Peggy Ann Cottrell on Ancestry. I found that she was born Peggy Ann Rowen in Union Township, Iowa in Hardin County. She was Peggy Ann Rowen, on June 1951, then Peggy Ann Dickenson, July 1955, and Peggy Ann Cottrell, on September 1970, according to her Social Security Application and Claims.

        I did not find any records of any marriages, or divorces. She had an older brother Larry J. Rowen, and two younger sisters, Marjorie Mae Rowen and Ruth Carola Rowen.

        There was an address of 840 11th Street, in Des Moines, Iowa, in 1954, for a Peggy A. Rowen. Also, an address in 1993 of 321 7th Street, West Des Moines, Iowa. No age of year of birth was connected to this last address.

        However, there was an entry for a Peggy & Roy Dickenson, of 2017 Grant, in Davenport, Iowa. This appears to be a business address in 1960. Not sure if this is her.

        She might have lived in Des Moines and West Des Moines, while working a the IVH according to Rosemary.

    • mitchell says:

      Jaw bone found today in Iowa River

  2. This is so sad. I also worked with Peggy on 2 E at IVH for several years.

  3. Talona Perry says:

    That makes me so sad. I knew peggy from the senior citizens center . She was a sweetheart. I was out walking with a group trying to help find her .

  4. This is so sad..I hope they find her

  5. Sherry Betts says:

    I worked with her at the vets home yrs ago ,her son was our best man in our wedding. So said not to know where your mom is or if she’s still alive or not

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