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  • Writer's pictureSarah Turney

Ryan Larsen

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Ryan Larsen was 11 years old when he walked out of his elementary school in La Vista, Nebraska on May 17, 2021. This is something he’d done before. He was known to leave school and hide when he became frustrated. The La Vista Police Department said they’d recovered Ryan at least half a dozen times before this. So, when he walked out on May 17, they figured it would be the same routine. They’d go check Ryan’s hiding spots and find him in 1-2 hours tops.

But this time was different. It has now been over a year since Ryan went missing and the La Vista Police department says they basically have no idea what happened to him.

It seems like they only have a handful of major leads right now, Ryan’s umbrella that was found next to a dumpster nearly a month after he went missing, some very blurry surveillance video and Ryan’s report of there being a strange man at his school just 2 weeks before he disappeared.

Ryan is almost 13 now. He is a white male with brown hair and hazel eyes. When he went missing, he was 11 years old and approximately 5ft 8 inches tall. He was wearing a black jacket, blue jeans, and an old navy shirt. He was having issues with acne on his forehead that was quite noticeable. So, it’s possible he still has acne or acne scars.

Authorities have asked that if you see Ryan, you do not call his name. But instead keep your distance and call 911. If you have any information about Ryan’s disappearance you can call Sarpy County Crime Stoppers at 402-592-7867.

A huge thank you to John Lordan at LordanARTS for introducing me to Ryan's sister, Taylor Larsen. Check out his work at


The Associated Press. “Missing 11-Year-Old Nebraska Boy with Autism Searched 'How to Hide from Police'.” WFLA, 20 May 2021,

Bandur, Michelle. “Online Mom Searching for Ryan Larsen Instrumental in New Billboard, Bus Bench Campaign.” KETV, 17 Feb. 2022,

Bandur, Michelle. 'Somebody Knows Something,' La Vista Police Chief Needs Evidence to Find Missing Ryan Larsen. KETV, 17 May 2022,

Bandyopadhyay, Alakananda. “Ryan Larsen: Missing 11-Year-Old Autistic Boy Searched 'How to Hide from Police' before Going Missing.” MEAWW, 20 May 2021,

Curtis, Alyssa. “'You Want to Find out Where He's at': La Vista PD Continues Search for Ryan Larsen.” KMTV, KMTV, 18 May 2022,

Fili, Sarah. “'Absolutely False': Chief Blasts Rumors as Desperate Search for 11-Year-Old Ryan Larsen Continues.” KETV, 24 June 2021,

La Vista Police Department,

Lundak, Marlo. “100 Days Later, Ryan Larsen Case Still Active but Slowing down, Chief Says.” Https://, 25 Aug. 2021,

Lundak, Marlo. “Mother, Sisters of Ryan Larsen Speak Publicly for First Time since Boy's Disappearance.” Https://, 26 Sept. 2021,

Lundak, Marlo. “Ryan Larsen Search: Authorities Examine More La Vista Video, Further Investigate Sex Offenders.” Https://Www.1011now.Com,

Lundak, Marlo. “'We're Not Giving up': La Vista Police Still Stumped by Ryan Larsen Disappearance.” Https://, 3 Jan. 2022,

Lundak, Marlo. “'We're Not Giving up': La Vista Police Still Stumped by Ryan Larsen Disappearance.” Https://, 3 Jan. 2022,

“Omaha Business Joins Effort to Find Missing Boy.” KLKN, 20 May 2021,

Police, La Vista. “Thursday 5PM Update: Officers and Volunteers Continue to Search for 11-Year Old Ryan Larsen. We Are Grateful to @MissingKids & @FBI Who Are Also Sharing Their Resources with Us to Find Him. If You See Ryan or Have Seen Him since Monday Please Call 911.” Twitter, Twitter, 20 May 2021,

Project Harmony, 4 Feb. 2022,

“Rally for Ryan Draws Hundreds in Support for Search of Missing La Vista Boy.” YouTube, Omaha World-Herald, 26 May 2021,

Robinson, Chelsea. Investigators Won't Release Surveillance Footage of Ryan Larsen, Ask Public to Respect Family's Privacy. KETV, 24 June 2021,

“Ryan Larsen on Brainscratch Searchlight #MissingPerson #Nebraska.” YouTube, LordanARTS, 23 July 2021,

Shirelle Moore, KPTM. “Federal Agencies Now Involved in Search for Missing La Vista Boy.” KPTM, 21 May 2021,

Stunson, Mike. Search Continues for Missing Nebraska 12-Year-Old Ryan Larsen | the ... 18 May 2022,

“Take Me Home Registry.” Take Me Home Registry | La Vista, NE - Official Website,

Turney, Sarah. “Interview with Taylor Larsen.” 3 May 2022.

Wolford, Brooke. Latest National & International News | The Kansas City Star. 20 May 2021,


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1 Comment

Madalyn Russek
Madalyn Russek
Feb 26, 2023

Taylor Larsen,

If you ever read this, I wanted to tell you that I think you are absolutely amazing in everything you are doing for Ryan. Being the oldest sibling myself, Ryan’s story felt personal. When something bad happens to my younger siblings( recently, my sister’s car was stolen )those momma bear instincts immediately set in, even though we aren’t close. You do this for Ryan every single day, which is no small task. I would be doing the exact same thing for my siblings until I got answers. To me, being the oldest sibling is a job that never expires, even in adulthood, but I wouldn’t change it for the world and I’m sure you wouldn’t either. While I…

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