Rob Tibbetts, the father of missing Iowa college student Mollie Tibbetts, has been front-and-center in the public pleas for information in the case.
However, tragically, it’s now been reported that her body was found on August 21, 2018, and Mollie is dead. You can learn more about that news here. Rob Tibbetts confirmed that Mollie’s body was found in an interview with Fox News.
Mollie Tibbetts was last seen going for a jog near the home where she was dog sitting in Brooklyn, Iowa, on July 18, 2018. After that point, she seemingly vanished without a trace. A massive search effort is underway to find Mollie and a reward fund for information about her whereabouts now exceeds $300,000.
Mollie’s father’s full name is Robert Tibbetts. He lives in California, and he’s divorced from Mollie’s mom.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Mollie Wrote on Twitter That Her Dad Will Always Be Her ‘Number One’
Mollie Tibbetts shared a moving Twitter message about her father. She posted a screenshot of their texts, in which Rob Tibbetts told his daughter, “You are amazing. I just can’t believe the person you are becoming. Keep it up.” Mollie responded, “I’ll do my best” and captioned the February 2017 tweet, “My dad will always be my #1❤❤.”
On July 30, 2018, Robert Tibbetts told the San Jose Mercury News that he had talked to Mollie for three hours about three weeks before that date. Robert Tibbetts lives in Fresno, California.
“She walked into a room, and had the ability to make everyone else the center of attention,” Rob Tibbetts told the newspaper. “She looked at you, she looked you in the eye, and she asked you about you. She was genuinely interested in other people and not herself.”
2. Rob Tibbetts Recently Remarried, With Mollie as His ‘Best Man’
Rob Tibbetts recently remarried, and Mollie was a key part of the wedding, which occurred June 3, 2018 in California.
The father told The Des Moines Register that the family “took a boat ride” and started diving into a lake from a large rock. Mollie screamed but jumped in, he told the Des Moines newspaper, adding that Mollie was his “best man” in the wedding.
“‘I’m your best man, I’m going with you,’” Tibbetts told the newspaper Mollie said. “She was my best man, and she was every bit the best man.”
3. Robert Tibbetts Believes That Mollie Is Still Alive
Rob Tibbetts has given many public statements and interviews in his quest to find Mollie, and he’s repeatedly made it clear that he believes she is still alive.
“When you’re alone, you talk to Mollie, and then you know why we’re fighting,” he told CNN. “She’s out there. We just feel it.”
Rob Tibbetts told CBS reporter Adriana Diaz that he has a theory in the case. “This is totally speculation,” the father said to CBS. “I think someone went to the house that Mollie knew or that Mollie trusted and that she left with them willingly — and now they’re in over their head and they don’t know what to do.”
Rob Tibbetts said to WHO-TV, “This is not about our emotions. We can have them later. We are going to fight and we are going to fight for Mollie.”
He added to the TV station: “She’s a real person. She’s just not a face on a poster. She’s our daughter, she’s our sister, she’s our friend. We just want her home.”
4. Mollie’s Mom Has Also Spoken Out About Her Daughter’s Disappearance
Laura Calderwood, Mollie’s mother, has also given public statements about her daughter’s disappearance.
According to the Des Moines Register, Mollie was born in San Francisco, California but moved to Brooklyn, Iowa with her mother in the second grade. In some interviews, Calderwood has recounted positive memories of Mollie, such as Mollie’s “chaotic” gingerbread house that she made while growing up.
“It’s exhausting, I don’t know where she is, I don’t know if she’s safe,” Tibbetts’ mother Laura Calderwood told ABC 7. “No, absolutely not. Mollie would never run off. I last spoke with her at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday night about what was for dinner. I told her brats. She said, ‘ok,’” Laura told KWWL-TV.
Mollie also has a brother named Scott who told WHO-TV, “I think the best way we’ve been able to keep a positive mentality is the fact that we all know Mollie. We all know what kind of person she is and how smart she is and how much of fighter she is.” Mollie also has an older brother named Jake Tibbetts. He’s claimed that evidence shows Mollie was doing homework on her computer the night she went missing, although the exact time is not clear.
5. Mollie’s Dad Is a Marketing Executive in San Francisco
Rob Tibbetts is a member of the board of directors for the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce, which describes him as having worked as Vice President/ Marketing Principal at a company called HOK.
On July 22, 2018, the HOK Facebook page shared Mollie’s missing poster and wrote, “Mollie Tibbetts, a member of HOK’s extended family, is missing. Please help with the search for Mollie by sharing with your followers.” HOK “is a global design, architecture, engineering and planning firm,” its bio reads.