It was an investigation technique that had worked well for him many times - start each interview with the same question. In this case, he spent days asking variations of, "So, tell me about the missing man."
Shift manager: "Zebley? Not a bad worker ... assuming you get him to show up on time and stay awake during his shift. On his good days, he was one of my best guys. But I wasn't surprised when he didn't show up yesterday. He's been late more times than all of the other first shift workers combined. You find him, you tell him not to bother coming back - I don't need a worker I can't count on. I've let him talk me into taking him back before, but not this time."
Coworker: "Zebley? Pfft. The boss seems to like him, but those of us on the floor never know when he is going to actually show up to work, or if he'll be awake enough to be useful. I spend half my shift covering for his narcoleptic ass, and the other half scrambling to make up my own work before the end of the day. With him gone, management will have to bring in someone new, and we'll get back to having a consistent workload. To tell you the truth, I'm glad he's gone."
Wife: "I can't believe he would just leave like this! He works so hard for me and the girls - after all those nights spent at his second job and things he's had to sacrifice, he wouldn't just leave us ... would he?"
Bartender: "You mean Big Z? Yeah, he works here. I love the nights he's manning the piano - that dude can play, let me tell you. We get a lot more people in the bar on nights he plays. Plus, he splits his tips with me."
Bar patron: "I don't know why you're asking me about him. Sure, I talk to him sometimes, and once or twice I might have let him buy me a drink. But that's all - really! It doesn't mean I know him - it's just a thing girls do, right? Let cute guys buy them drinks? It doesn't mean we're sleeping together or anything..."