Gary Dale Mathias is a U.S. Army Veteran who went missing on February 24, 1978 after the car that he was travelling in with 4 other people stopped during a snowstorm on a road in the mountains east of Oroville, California. Gary Dale Mathias was medically discharged from the Army and later joined a team of fellow mentally handicapped basketball players for a day program where they would compete in games around the area. The team had traveled together in a vehicle to Chico, California on February 24 for a basketball game. The last time Gary Dale Mathias and his four teammates (Jack Madruga, Jack Huett, Ted Weiber and William Sterling) were seen alive was after a Chico State University Basketball Game when they were buying items at a nearby grocery store.
On February 27, 1978, the car that Gary Dale Mathias and his four teammates were traveling in was located in an area with 4 to 6 feet of snow on a Plumas National Forest service road. After the spring thaw, the bodies of his 4 teammates were all located at distances up to 19 miles away from the vehicle. They were not dressed for the cold weather and it appears as though they may have set out on foot for help and succumbed to the extreme cold. The body of Gary Dale Mathias has yet to be located, but he is presumed deceased.
If you have any information about the whereabouts of Gary Dale Mathias, contact the Yuba County Sheriffs Office at 530-749-7777