Flashback Friday: George Barksdale

This week’s Flashback Friday case is little George “Sputnik” Barksdale, who disappeared at the age of four, forty-four years ago. He was last seen playing outside his family’s church in Baltimore on April 21, 1969.

Other than the fact that he was apparently abducted, very little information is available about George. He was there, and then he wasn’t — just vanished. Nobody saw anything. There’s no evidence that he’s dead, but no evidence that he’s alive either. The only press I could find was from a local newspaper for Baltimore’s black community. George doesn’t even have a good quality photograph available.

He must have some family members out there still; I can well imagine that his disappearance left a permanent bruise in their lives.

Possibly some media outlet in Baltimore will take an interest in George Barksdale’s case and maybe run an article or something. Maybe next spring, on the forty-fifth anniversary of his disappearance. That happens sometimes. But I doubt it’s going to happen with this case.

10 thoughts on “Flashback Friday: George Barksdale

  1. Orla September 27, 2013 / 5:27 am

    Reminds me of Dontray Miguel Hunter’s case in Wisconsin..

    Both children vanished from outside their homes. Seemingly no coverage in the media around the time of the abductions or since.

    Bth boys away from home for 40 years next year.

    I do wonder about families in these cases, how awful never to have had a resolution, how soul destroying to see other missing kids cases doggedly pursued.

    • Meaghan September 27, 2013 / 8:44 am

      And both boys were black.

  2. Orla September 27, 2013 / 5:32 am

    Sorry I thought George disappeared from his hime, I see it was a church; much of a muchness, both places a child should be safe.

  3. Michael September 29, 2013 / 12:16 am

    I’m really surprised the media doesn’t pay more attention to this. I guess they are too preoccupied with other senseless drivel. This hits home for me because I was nearly snatched as a child. I’m pretty sure if I didn’t run to my home I’d be missing too.

    • Meaghan September 29, 2013 / 1:45 am

      I, too, had a similar experience as a child. It wasn’t a stranger, though; it was a neighbor. Long story short, he offered to give me a flower if I would just go into his house with him to get it. I said I didn’t want one, but he kept trying to persuade me to go, eventually grabbed me by the arm, and then finally just picked me up and started to carry me inside his house. I started kicking and screaming and he set me down real quick and told me to go away.

      I was about four or so, too young to realize what had happened. I had no sense of danger, it was just that I didn’t want to go with the man. I went home crying and told my mom that the neighbor had “scared” me. Now, over 20 years later, I’m pretty sure that guy was up to no good.

      • Michael September 29, 2013 / 12:31 pm

        I wonder if most people who end up missing are abducted by those that live close to them or are closest to them. What makes them do things like that? I really don’t understand mankind….

      • Meaghan September 29, 2013 / 12:54 pm

        Yes, people (both adults and children), if they did not disappear voluntarily, were probably were taken my someone they knew: a boyfriend, a girlfriend, a spouse, a neighbor, a friend of the family, etc. Not to mention the all-too-frequent times when the parents kill their kid and make up a story about a kidnapping.

  4. mary June 30, 2015 / 11:48 am

    Is there anyone still interested in this? I am. I lived across the street from the Sweet Daddy Grace Church and remember it well. I have always been intrigued by Sputniks’ disappearance.

  5. Taivonia Jennings February 2, 2017 / 7:25 pm

    Hello. My grandmothers family name is Barksdale and we reside in Baltimore. I have been working on our family tree for the last 8yrs. I have never heard of a George in the family but maybe we can talk and discuss who Georges parents are/were and start from there.

    • Meaghan February 2, 2017 / 8:50 pm

      Unfortunately, I have no contact with George’s family and I don’t know who his parents are or if they are still alive.

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