MP of the week: Josephine Despard

This week’s featured missing person is a young woman named Josephine Doris Despard, who vanished from the town of Olean in western New York on February 7, 1984. She was 26 years old at the time and in the process of a divorce and custody battle. The only photo I’ve got for her appears to be a high school graduation photo. If that is so, it would be eight years out of date. I do know that Josephine’s hair was short when she disappeared, not long like in the photo.

The police don’t suspect her husband; the investigation has focused on the person last seen with Josephine, a man who committed suicide later that year. I can’t find anything else about this case, and the identity of the person of interest has not been made public.

If Josephine is still alive, she would now be 58 years old.

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2 thoughts on “MP of the week: Josephine Despard

  1. Cattt May 14, 2016 / 4:02 pm

    So strange how she was fighting her husband for custody of their child, but yet after she disappeared her sister adopted her.

    • Meaghan May 14, 2016 / 5:12 pm

      I don’t think it’s that strange. A lot of times children get adopted by relatives in the absence of their parents. Maybe Dad dropped the custody issue after Josephine disappeared; maybe he was denied custody because he was a man (single dads were less acceptable in those days than they are now); or maybe something happened to stop him getting custody (he died, went to prison, joined the military and got deployed somewhere, etc).

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