In the fall of 1999, Sharon Apgar finally felt like she was getting control of her life. The 32-year-old, known as Shari to family and friends, had filed for divorce, gotten herself off of prescription drugs, and had started a new job. She was proud of herself for making so many changes and was hopeful that she would be able to build a brighter future for herself and her 16-year-old son, Joshua Dunn.
Shari spent November 18, 1999, with her mother, Patty Nause, at her home in Newtonsville, Ohio. Patty had custody of Shari’s son, and Shari had been staying with her after filing for divorce. When Shari left the house that night to meet up with some friends, she didn’t intend to be gone for an extended period of time. She never returned, however, and her family never saw her again.
After leaving her mother’s house, Shari drove to Fort Mitchell, Kentucky, about 40 minutes away from Newtonsville. She met up with some friends at the Cross County Inn, but at some point that night she left. Her friends believed that she was going somewhere to meet up with her ex-husband, Mike George, but they weren’t sure where. It was the last time Shari was seen.
When Shari didn’t return to Newtonsville, her family was immediately concerned. Shari and Mike had a long and troubled relationship, and Shari had been terrified that he was going to hurt her. They found it hard to believe that she would have willingly met up with him, but he had always had a strange hold over her.
Mike was Shari’s second husband. She married Darryl Dunn when she was only 16 years old, in November 1982. In May 1983, they had their only child, Joshua. But the marriage didn’t last, and in 1985 Shari was able to get a divorce from Darryl. After some time, she met Mike.
The people who know Shari say that her relationship with Mike was violent. Mike had total control over Shari’s life and got her hooked on prescription drugs. He also hurt her physically. Don Penker, Shari’s sister, told a reporter in 2009 that she knew Mike had hit her sister. “She was little, weak, and scared, so she would have cuts and broken bones.”
Mike had been in trouble with the law before and was a member of a motorcycle gang in Cincinnati. He was given a three-year prison sentence in the early 1990s, and Shari saw it as her chance to get away from him. She was no longer using drugs, and by the time Mike got out of jail, she was getting better. She went back to Mike after he convinced her that he had changed, which was a bad thing.
Things looked like they might work out for a short time. They tried to start over when they moved to Florida, but they soon moved back to Ohio. Mike started hanging out with the motorcycle gang again, and Shari’s life quickly got out of hand again. She became dependent on prescription drugs once more.
Shari had had enough by 1999. She asked her family for help getting away from Mike after he was sent back to prison. After giving up drugs, she moved back in with her mom. But after she filed for divorce, she was scared for her life all the time. After Mike got out of prison in November, her fears got worse. She was sure that he or one of his motorcycle gang friends was going to kill her.
When Shari wasn’t in touch with her mother for more than a few days, she told Patty to call the police and say that her ex-husband was probably to blame. Patty paid attention to these words when Shari didn’t come home from a night out. She told the Clermont County Sheriff’s Office that she was missing.
After getting a report of Shari going missing, Clermont County detectives tried to get in touch with Mike George but couldn’t find him. It looked like he and Shari were both missing. In January 2000, they called a nearby newspaper and asked them to print a short story about their search for Shari and Mike.
By the following month, there had been no progress in finding Mike or Shari. The people who knew Shari were sure that Mike had killed her and then hidden. Sheriff of Clermont County A.J. Rodenberg said that the things that happened when Shari went missing were strange, but that detectives hadn’t found any evidence that foul play had happened. He wouldn’t even name Mike as a possible suspect in the disappearance, telling reporters, “There are other possibilities.”
As for Patty, she had no other choices. She told the news media that she thought her daughter was dead. That’s what she thought from the moment she realized her daughter was missing. “We don’t really think we can get Shari back.” I really don’t think she’s still alive “
The girl agreed with her mom. She said that Shari had been very honest about being afraid of her ex-husband. He had told her he would kill her more than once, and she was sure he really meant to do it.
Sheriff Rodenberg said that the police knew the family was worried but couldn’t prove that Mike had actually threatened to kill Shari. “We know a lot of things, but we can’t confirm that she is living in fear for her life.”
During the night of February 11, 2000, Shari’s family prayed for her at a church in Miami Township, Ohio. Public members were asked to come and pray that Shari would be found. Patty said she hoped God would hear the prayers and bring her daughter back to her. Shari’s family was also offering a $6,000 reward for information that would help them find her.
Mike was eventually found, but he said he didn’t know where Shari was and hadn’t done anything to make her disappear. Since there was no solid proof of wrongdoing, the investigation quickly stopped and went cold.
There were a lot of rumors in the area about what had happened to Shari, and they all had to do with Mike and the Iron Horse motorcycle gang he was a part of. Mike kept saying he wasn’t guilty. Others said that he and other club members had killed her and dumped her body in the Ohio River. Still others said that her body had been cut up and put in trash bags. Some people thought she was buried, maybe near the Iron Horse clubhouse.
Investigators couldn’t find any proof to support any of these rumors, but by 2009, they were admitting that they no longer thought Shari was alive. Donna, her sister, seemed to have given up hope that Shari’s killer would be caught, but she really wanted her body to be found. “Shari should have a place to rest.” We should go somewhere.
A further ten years went by with no clues. Joshua, Shari’s son, had left the military in 2020 and said he was going to spend his time trying to find out what happened to his mother. He talked about the case on social media in the hopes that someone who knew something would come forward and help.
Josh described his mother as a fun-loving woman who had a heart of gold, someone who would have done anything for anyone. He couldn’t say the same about Mike. “My stepfather wasn’t an angel by any means. I think there are a few people who know exactly what happened.”
By 2020, Shari had been missing for more than 20 years. Her mother, Patty, died in 2004 without ever knowing what had happened to her. Josh was hoping that the long search for answers would finally come to an end. Like Donna, he just wanted closure. Unfortunately, investigators stated that the people they believed likely had the answers they needed refused to cooperate with police.
Joshua asked for anyone with information to speak with investigators, even if they had been too fearful to do so before, telling a reporter that it would help his family to finally have some closure. “It’s just one of those things, I need to know.”
Sharon Rose Apgar was 32 years old when she went missing in 1999. Due to the circumstances surrounding her disappearance, detectives, as well as Shari’s family, believe that foul play was involved. Shari has blonde hair and blue eyes, and at the time of her disappearance, she was 5 feet 4 inches tall and weighed 100 pounds. She was last seen wearing blue jeans, a green long-sleeved shirt, and black combat-style boots. Shari had a tattoo of a heart with a ribbon on her left shoulder; the names Josh Michael, Michael Thomas, Michael Leon, and Shari George were tattooed on the ribbon of the heart. She also had a tattoo of a rose on her left breast. If you have any information about Shari, please contact the Clermont County Sheriff’s Office at 513–732–7545.