Mysteries Series: Jim Thompson

Jim Thompson - Archive Photo by The Star Online Malaysia

Jim Thompson – Archive Photo by The Star Online Malaysia

(This is the first story under the Mysteries Series.)

American businessman James Harrison Wilson (Jim) Thompson disappeared without a trace in the afternoon of March 26, 1967 (Easter Sunday). Going out for a walk in Malaysia’s Cameron Highlands, he was expected to return for afternoon tea, but he never came back.

An intense search was conducted but no clues were found as to what happened.

Jim Thompson was once an operative of the Office of Strategic Services (before it became the Central Intelligence Agency – CIA) who later co-founded the Thai Silk Company. These information were subject of several theories of his disappearance.

There were theories of assassination (by spies), kidnapping, murder (by rival businessmen), accidental death, getting lost in the jungle and him having a hand in his own disappearance (a new identity).

A few months after Jim disappeared, his sister was murdered but the connection between these cases were never proven.

There were somewhat strange things to point out as well.

  • It appeared that he somewhat strangely waved “goodbye” to his friends before departing.
  • Around 4 pm that afternoon someone saw him from distance leaving a precinct.
  • The scent trail was broken right down the road he took, leading them to conclude that he left the area by riding a vehicle.
  • Some claimed to have found his bone remains a few years later, but was never verified.
  • Sighting of Jim in Tahiti several months after, but was never verified also (fueling stories that he faked it).

With only one unreliable eyewitness of his last known whereabouts, no definite persons of interests, no DNA trace, no clues, and no substantial theory, the Thai silk king’s mystery will never truly be closed.

It’s been almost 50 years, it’s still baffling how a popular man who was out for an afternoon (leisure) walk can (inexplicably) disappear (without a trace) forever.

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