Anne Heinig, the mother of Anneliese Heinig, shared stories of her daughter at a Friday vigil in Brunswick. Anneliese Heinig was last seen Nov. 26. The Times Record photo by Kathleen O’Brien

BRUNSWICK — A Richmond woman who disappeared late last month was still missing Monday following a search throughout the week of a Maine river using boats, aircraft and a drone.

Anneliese Heinig, 37, was last seen early on Nov. 26 walking along Interstate 295 near where it crosses the Presumpscot River in Falmonth.

Anneliese Heinig Courtesy photo

The mother of two had left her car on the shoulder of the road with her keys, wallet and cellphone inside.

The search continued on Friday with marine patrol units, game wardens, state troopers, a dive team and help from the Richmond police, the Portland Press Herald reported.

Police had no news to share on Sunday, said Falmouth Police Lt. Frank Soule by email.

“Boats and aircraft will be routinely checking the immediate area for the foreseeable future,” he wrote. “Any possible leads will be looked into immediately.”


“Going forward short of any new information, we will continue to search these areas on a smaller scale,” he said.

About 200 people turned out for a candlelight vigil for Heinig on Friday night in Brunswick.

Scores of friends and family members gathered at the Town Mall while the snow fell to share stories of Heinig, with many speaking about her kindness.

“Thirty-one years later it’s amazing to hear the impression she had on people,” said Pat Clark, Anneliese Heinig’s kindergarten teacher. “Even as a little girl she just had this way about her.”

Anne Heinig, Anneliese’s mother, said she was overwhelmed by the outpouring of support from the community.

“(The vigil) is a very thoughtful way of keeping Anneliese front and center in people’s minds,” said Chris Heinig, Anneliese’s father. “People who are grieving can hug one another and share their feelings.”


State Police Cpl. Fern Cloutier discovered Heinig’s vehicle in the breakdown lane of I-295 north at about 8:30 a.m. on Nov. 26. Cloutier conducted “a quick check” of the SUV and the surrounding area before he headed back out on patrol, according to a statement released by Maine State Police on Thursday night.

“The state police policy on abandoned vehicles does encourage contact with a registered owner, but many times that does not take place, primarily because of the sheer volume of vehicles left along the roadways,” Maine Department of Public Safety spokesman Steve McCausland said in the statement. “In this case, state police did not attempt to contact the owners, nor did we conduct an inventory of the vehicle’s contents.”

McCausland said troopers respond to more than 6,000 aid-to-motorist calls annually, or roughly 16 calls per day statewide on average, and that typically, troopers allow time for the driver or owner of a car to return to the vehicle or make arrangements to remove it.

Photos of Anneliese Heinig, the 37-year-old woman from Richmond who has been missing since Nov. 26. Photos courtesy of the Richmond Police Department

By 1:30 p.m. that day, a state Department of Transportation worker called state police and asked if the SUV could be moved, and the trooper then authorized the tow.

Heinig’s parents wouldn’t learn their daughter was missing until two days later when she didn’t show up for Thanksgiving dinner. Richmond police then traced the location of Heinig’s cellphone, which led them to the South Portland tow company that had removed the vehicle, which belongs to Chris and Anne Heinig, from the side of the highway at the request of Maine State Police.

“If the police had simply gone into the car, they would’ve seen the registration … and could’ve given me a call,” said Chris Heinig. “At that point, we would’ve realized something was amiss.”


The Portland Press Herald reported Maine State Police divers and game wardens using sonar searched a section of the Presumpscot River on Wednesday without finding a trace of the missing Richmond woman. The search continued Thursday morning using an airplane that flew over the area for several hours during low tide.

Chris Heinig said he was told by police: “Anneliese is definitely not in the area we searched. Despite the enormous efforts from police from across the state, they haven’t been able to find a trace.”

“We’re extremely thankful for all the police efforts throughout Maine,” said Chris Heinig. “We don’t know at this point having not found a body. She may still be alive.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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