Sunday, September 20, 2009

Gone Missing

Lindsey Baum vanished a few blocks from her home on June 26, 2009

Their faces are locked in perpetual smiles from better times. At present, sixty-three men, women, and children are pictured on the FBI’s “Missing and Kidnapped” website. Some were headline-grabbers, others barely known. Some have been missing for a few months, others for decades. Each portrait spirals back in time to tell a tale of mystery and loss.

Three months ago, Lindsey Baum, 10, left a friend’s residence in McCleary, Washington to walk home. Somewhere along the ten-minute route she vanished. Lindsey hasn’t been seen since. She’s eleven now, if she’s still alive. Police believe she was abducted.

On the night of May 25, 1996, Kristin Denise Smart headed toward her dorm on the California Polytechnic University campus. Another student walked part of the way with her. Then she disappeared. It’s been thirteen years and still there’s been no sign of the missing coed.

Three teenage girls vanished from the same area in Cleveland, Ohio. Amanda Berry, 16, went missing from her west side neighborhood in 2003. Fourteen-year-old Gina DeJesus disappeared in 2004. And Ashley Summers, 14, vanished in 2007. The local media has speculated that a serial kidnapper is responsible. Police have confirmed that they are investigating that possibility.

What happened to seven-year-old Alexis Patterson? In 2002, she walked toward her school in Milwaukee and was never seen again. Both her father and step-father have criminal records but were eliminated from suspicion by police. Alexis had had an argument with her mother before school and at first police thought she’d run way. Later, however, investigators said they suspected foul play.

The list goes on. Eight years ago, eleven-year-old Bethany Markowski disappeared from a shopping mall in Jackson, Tennessee. In 2005, 64-year-old Nita Mayo left her home in Hawthorne, Nevada and has never been seen again. In 2002, college student Rachel Cook went jogging in her hometown of Georgetown, Texas and never came home. Tionda Bradley, 10, and her sister Diamond, 3, walked to a nearby store in Chicago and vanished. It’s as if they all were lost in a black hole.

Their loved ones grieve; the public wonders how someone could just vanish without a trace; and the cops struggle to find answers. Some of the missing may never be found--others will turn up dead.

But as long as their bodies haven’t been found, there’s hope. Elizabeth Smart, Shawn Hornbeck, Shasta Groene, and Jaycee Lee Dugard are four among many who have been found alive after having been abducted.

For more information on these and other cases, go to


L K Tucker said...

There is a difference in the disappearances of diverse age groups.

Certainly these children are probably victims of abduction.

Older students and adults though, have a common thread of a dissociative mental event leading to "running."

While you cannot prevent abductions the other group of disappearances are completely preventable. Subliminal Distraction was discovered to cause mental breaks for office workers forty years ago. Designers successfully devised a prevention system.

Today it is possible to construct the "special circumstances" for this problem in homes, dorms, student apartments, and small business offices. But that same prevention system Cubicle Level Protection can be used without cost.


Anonymous said...

It's great to see at least one of these cases get solved!

Anonymous said...

It's wonderful to see at least one of these cases has been solved!