Ted Siedle, known for his advisories on how deceptive practices in the money management industry can be financially perilous, lives every day with a heart-wrenching reminder that the world is a dangerous place.
He has been searching for the remains of his father, Robert L. Siedle, who was murdered in Uganda 32 years ago during the dictatorship of Idi Amin Dada.
Edward "Ted" Siedle, who is now president of Benchmark Cos., a consulting firm based in Lighthouse Point, Fla., was 17 when his father disappeared in 1971.
Robert Siedle, a sociologist, was lecturing at Makerere University in Kampala and doing gerontological research in the countryside. After two years in Uganda, he had been planning to return to the United States.
In July 1971, Robert Siedle and Nicholas Stroh, a freelance journalist, disappeared while investigating reports of a massacre of hundreds of Ugandan soldiers. Mr. Stroh, seeking contacts in the field, had been put in touch with Robert Siedle.
Nearly a year later, a commission of inquiry, empaneled by Mr. Amin, contended the two Americans were killed by unidentified soldiers in the Ugandan army. While disputing the findings, the Ugandan government paid a settlement of $80,000 each to the families of the men without acknowledging any wrongdoing.
"That's why I became a lawyer," said Ted Siedle, inspired by the intrigue and disappointed by the lack of advocacy of the case.
Ted Siedle believes the remains, if found, could still be identified.
"I wouldn't be doing this unless there was a strong chance something is there, something to find," Mr. Siedle said. Finding the remains "would give some closure to me and some insight into how they were killed. I think there is a lot that can be discovered still."
Mr. Siedle visited Uganda in 1997 and was introduced with Ugandan military assistance to two former soldiers who were present when his father was killed, but he wasn't able to locate the remains.
He would like to return, but not without official Ugandan government support.
Mr. Siedle contacted the Ugandan ambassador to the United States, Edith Grace Ssempala, in the past year seeking Ugandan government assistance in his search for the remains.
Mrs. Ssempala hasn't responded beyond informing him the government is working on his request, he said.
Calls by Pensions & Investments to Mrs. Ssempala weren't returned.