I was tracking up more NamUs cases just now when I came across the 1983 disappearance of Sharaun Cole. Her case is one of those extremely frustrating ones: a child, missing for a very long time, with absolutely no information as to how or why. At twelve, Sharaun was just old enough for the police to have possibly just written her case off as a runaway. And who knows, maybe she was. (The fact that she sometimes used an alternate date of birth might be an indication.) Or maybe she was kidnapped. Or maybe she fell off a pier. Maybe a family member was involved. Perhaps she was in foster care when she disappeared.
I have absolutely no idea. And I do occasional searches through my usual portals, but I have never found a single article about Sharaun. Someone cared enough to report her missing, and her AP has been dutifully updated over the years, but otherwise it seems like she’s forgotten. It’s been 28 years, Sharaun. Who is still looking for you? Do you have a mother somewhere who still thinks of you every day?
“Few details are available in Cole’s case.” That sentence, to me, is much more depressing than details of the most horrifying kidnap/murders.
When seventeen-year-old Kami Vollendroff and her eighteen-year-old boyfriend Eugene Hyatt disappeared walking on a beach nine and a half years ago, everyone believed they’d been swept out to sea. Apparently there was a storm, and that stretch of beach had been known to eat people before. Several days later one of Eugene’s shoes turned up in the water a few miles away, and that was the last of either of them.
But Kami’s grandmother thinks she might be alive. She said the Coast Guard told her it was very unusual that neither of the bodies were ever found, and she says she has a picture of an unknown woman that, she believes, is 99.9% probable to be Kami. She says the NCMEC backed her up on this.
This sounds very much like wishful thinking to me. But we can still hope.
According to the Wichita Eagle, the adoptive “parents” of Adam Herrman will go to trial in a week on charges of stealing money from the state that was meant to pay for his care. I have written enough about Adam and his very sad story that he has his own sub-category on this blog.
I can’t imagine what kind of defense Doug and Valerie Herrman will have. They have confessed many times that they took the money. They admit they lied many times on official documents and such that Adam was living with them when he was not. They admit that this fraud went on for years. The only thing I can think of is that the defense might try to mitigate their sentences or something.
Of course, the real question is: Where is Adam? Most likely: Where is he buried? Perhaps the looming specter of prison time for fraud might convince one of the Herrmans to flip and testify against the other about Adam’s disappearance. But it hasn’t happened yet.
Jason Jolkowski disappeared ten years ago yesterday from Omaha, Nebraska. His disappearance is one of those seemingly inexplicable ones that leave you wondering whether he got taken by aliens or something. He was nineteen years old and an ordinary enough young man, living with his parents, working in a restaurant. There’s no mention of drugs or anything. He was just gone. If he is alive, Jason will turn thirty years old on the 24th.
His mom, Kelly, has managed to create a great deal of good in the aftermath of her son’s disappearance. I believe it was her activism that got the Nebraska state missing person database online, and she also founded Project Jason, a nonprofit dedicated to spreading awareness of missing people and helping their families. I’ve referred quite a few people to Project Jason.