The brother of a doctor found dead in the Ozarks speaks out about mobile home and child support claims
The brother of an emergency room doctor found dead in the Ozarks has dismissed suggestions that he was living in a mobile home because he couldn’t afford the $19,000 a month in child support and maintenance payments for his eight children.
The body of the 49-year-old Dr. John Forsyth was found with a gunshot wound in Beaver Lake, Arkansas, nine days after he was reported missing when he unusually failed to show up for work.
On surveillance footage on May 21, the day he disappeared, the father was seen walking toward a luxury RV he had parked in the parking lot of the Cassville, Missouri, hospital where he worked.
Speaking to DailyMail.com, his brother Richard said claims that Forsyth lived in the trailer because he couldn’t afford maintenance were “not at all” true and “just ignorant.”
“He had an RV that he stayed in when he was on duty for you. “There were periods when he was working but was not needed and needed to be available,” Richard claimed.
The body of the 49-year-old Dr. John Forsyth was found with a gunshot wound in Beaver Lake in northeast Arkansas
His brother Richard told DailyMail.com that the doctor would use the luxury RV to rest during his call or duty because he worked long hours
Forsyth is pictured here with his pregnant fiancée Laura Barnett, who he told his brother Richard was the “love of his life”.
“And so the RV was in the parking lot of the hospital where he was on duty – he went there to rest, rest wherever he could, because sometimes he would work, you know, 9, 10, 12 hours” in one Row.
“And even during the times when he wasn’t technically on duty, he could be called and so he had to get a sleep break code, so he had this RV, but he also had other houses and buildings.”
Forsyth had seven children with his wife and another with another mother. According to Richard, they range in age from one year old to about 25 years old.
His divorce was finalized last month and he was ordered to pay alimony and child support of about $19,000 a month. Many online commentators suspect his death may have been linked to the payments.
Forsyth was last seen getting into a car in the parking lot of a public pool in Cassville. He was then seen exiting the vehicle and walking around the parking lot for 10 to 15 minutes.
At the time of his death, many family members did not know that Forsyth was engaged to 39-year-old Laura Barnett.
The doctor had proposed to Barnett, who is reportedly eight months pregnant, just days before his disappearance. The couple worked together at Mercy Hospital, where she is a nurse.
His brother explained that Forsyth kept his relationship with his fiancée secret during the divorce out of respect for his ex-wife.
“I think both of them were aware of the sensitivity of disclosing such information during a divorce,” Richard told DailyMail.com. “And they also have their professional lives and their reputations, and I think they wanted to handle things appropriately.”
“They wanted to try to show the utmost respect to the communities they belong to. And it’s strange to say that sometimes we show respect by leaving out important facts.”
Richard also said police are treating the death as a homicide but have not provided further details to the family.
Police have not said whether they are treating the death as a homicide or suicide and have not released the location of the gunshot wound. The results of the autopsy will not be released until the investigation is complete.
DailyMail.com has reached out to the Benton County Sheriff’s Office for comment.
The brothers had dinner just days before Forsyth’s disappearance and Richard said his behavior before his death was not “the actions of a person killing themselves.”
He said: “On May 17, four days before my brother disappeared, he and I had dinner for three hours. Looking back, I think we had a very long goodbye.
Forsyth’s body was found near the shore opposite the Lost Bridge South area of Beaver Lake, which is about 20 miles south of Cassville, police said
Shortly thereafter, Cassville police conducted a massive 90-acre search that yielded no results until a kayaker found his body last month
In an eerie new picture, his stethoscope can be seen dangling from the rearview mirror of his Infiniti sedan
“It was at that dinner he told me about.” [his fiancée] Laura, and he is very happy to have found her and they are very much in love. And I congratulated him.
“He really seems to have found something that makes her happy.” And I told him I was really happy about that. And he was very optimistic about the future
Authorities found Forsyth’s abandoned black Infiniti sedan at Cassville Aquatic Park. Inside were the car keys as well as Forsyth’s wallet, passport and briefcase. His two cell phones were found in the hospital’s mobile home.
Shortly thereafter, Cassville police conducted a massive 90-acre search that yielded no results until a kayaker found his body last month.
The body was found near the shore opposite the Lost Bridge South area of Beaver Lake, which is about 20 miles south of Cassville.
New images show officers’ search efforts across the lake where his body was found, a stethoscope hanging eerily from his car’s rearview mirror.
In a bizarre revelation, Richard had previously revealed that his brother had been kidnapped and threatened by unknown assailants in February 2022.
Richard, who co-founded crypto company OnFo with his brother, said that despite the horrific ordeal, John never reported it to the police.
He said he first learned of the kidnapping from a mutual friend, who only came forward to describe the incident to the family after John disappeared under mysterious circumstances.
Richard warned that there was no evidence yet linking the 2022 incident to John’s death, but added: “It’s very clear in the fact sheets that have come to light about the case.”
‘It was cold. It was tied with a zipper. He was made to feel very insecure and was driven by car with some people to a bridge where he was threatened.
“He did not make a police report because he believed he remained in danger.”
The family say they would rather be “kept in the dark” about the police investigation if it means they get “justice” for the doctor.