LEE — Meghan Marohn checked in at The Red Lion Inn in Stockbridge looking to get away.
There had been an emotional upset, said Peter Naple, Marohn’s older brother. He is not comfortable elaborating on why Marohn, of Delmar, N.Y., was suffering, but said a friend of hers thought going to the historic inn might help.
“She was in contact with friends, who said, ‘Just get a room in Stockbridge and just relax,’” Naple said Friday.
It was Saturday, March 26 when Marohn arrived in Stockbridge. Naple got in touch with Marohn that day.
“I asked how she was doing, and she said ‘I’m just enjoying my soup, and I’m reading a book, and I’m just enjoying the room,’” he said of the conversation.
It was their last talk before Marohn, 42, an English teacher, poet and activist went missing. The next day, residents spotted her black Subaru in the trailhead parking area at the 46-acre Janet Longcope Park in South Lee. On Tuesday, March 29, seeing the car hadn’t moved, police began combing a wide radius around the Church Street area.
Police this week reassured residents that they do not believe there was foul play involved with Marohn’s disappearance, and said there is no evidence to suggest the public is in danger or that the case is connected to any others.
Naple, of Northville, N.Y., created a website, findmeghanmarohn.com, that has a message board for tips and is asking that anyone who saw her or might have any surveillance footage of her contact the police. He is hopeful his sister might still be alive, but also says he realizes the situation is shifting — and not for the better.
“I think the investigation is focusing more on someone that’s not alive,” he said.
Questions linger: Why her car ended up at the trailhead on a windy, snowy day. Why cellphone signals appear to show that Marohn might not have walked the loop trail at all, instead crossing the road into a rural residential area. The cell signal was lost across the street from the park, Naple said.
Naple wonders why she chose the obscure Longcope Park, known mostly to Lee residents. Longcope wouldn’t come up in a Google search of great places to hike, he said. Indeed, it does not. Nor had she ever mentioned the place.
Asked if the artistic, sensitive Marohn knew the story of Janet Percy Dana Longcope, the property’s namesake, and the connection to poetry through Longcope’s cousin, the poet William Alexander Percy, Naple said it had occurred to the family that she might have.
“We thought that maybe she did stumble on that person’s name and that history, and that maybe that’s why she went there,” he said.
Marohn, a poet and teacher at Shaker High School in Latham, would sit at her manual typewriter and whip up custom poetry on the spot, reported the website All Over Albany, in 2016:
“Meghan Marohn is terrible at small talk. She’ll tell you so herself. But if you want to talk about the meaning of life — or love, time, repetition, or the Collar City Bridge — Meghan is happy to oblige. You’ll find her sitting by the river at Troy Flea, or along River Street at the Enchanted City festival or Troy Night Out. She’s the red-haired writer behind the manual typewriter next to the sign that reads: Troy Poem Project.”
Naple has been to Longcope every day since Marohn’s car was found. He and family walk the conservation land and the woods and trails beyond it. The police continue their own official search and investigation.
“We just keep walking the property,” he said. “We are still looking for someone we hope is still alive and I’m trying to do whatever I can to keep that hope alive.”