Much ado about nothing?

So I wrote earlier about how they were digging up a suspected mass grave in Michigan, and thought as many as five missing girls might be there. I’ll list them again:

  1. Cynthia Coon, 13, missing from Washtenaw County since January 19, 1970
  2. Nadine Jean O’Dell, 16, missing from Inkster since August 16, 1974
  3. Kimberly Alice King, 12, missing from Warren since September 16, 1979
  4. Kim Marie Larrow, 13, missing from Canton since June 8, 1981
  5. Kellie Marie Brownlee, 17, missing from Novi since May 20, 1982

Well, after a solid week out there with shovels and relatives pitching in (!), the dig is finished and they found…nothing. No human remains.

Obviously this is a profound disappointment for everybody and I have to wonder if there’s anyone out there at all. The police haven’t given up, at least not officially; they stated they quit in part because of weather and in part because they were “evaluating today what our next step is.”

So they’re digging up a suspected mass grave in Michigan

For the past several days cops have been excavating a farm in Michigan outside of Detroit, where they think several longtime missing girls are buried. The property used to be owned by Arthur Nelson Ream, who is currently serving a life sentence for the rape and murder of Cynthia Jocelyn Zarzycki.

Cindy was 13 when she disappeared in 1986. Her boyfriend, Scott Ream, was Arthur Ream’s son. Arthur told Cindy he was going to have a surprise party for Scott’s birthday, and invited her to come. She brought a mixtape to give to Scott. But there was no party; it was all an excuse for Arthur to get her into his car.

In 2008, Arthur lead investigators to Cindy’s body, buried in a shallow grave along the Clinton River in Macomb Township, Michigan. Well, apparently after his imprisonment he started talking about some other murders he allegedly committed.

The other possible victims (all from Michigan) include:

  1. Cynthia Coon, 13, missing from Washtenaw County since January 19, 1970
  2. Nadine Jean O’Dell, 16, missing from Inkster since August 16, 1974
  3. Kimberly Alice King, 12, missing from Warren since September 16, 1979
  4. Kim Marie Larrow, 13, missing from Canton since June 8, 1981
  5. Kellie Marie Brownlee, 17, missing from Novi since May 20, 1982

And here’s some articles about it:

Flashback Friday: Joyce Brewer

Gah, I have been neglecting my weekly features as of late and haven’t done a FF case since March. This one is Joyce Creola Brewer, a fifteen-year-old girl who disappeared from Grand Prairie, Texas on September 6, 1970.

The circumstances of Joyce’s disappearance — last seen stomping out of the house after a fight with her parents — might indicate she ran away. If so she’s been gone for a VERY long time, obviously — 46 years, almost 47 — but it’s by no means impossible that she’s still alive.

If she is not, or for that matter if she is, a good way to identify her would be the extensive burn scars on her torso and left arm.

If she’s still alive, Joyce would be 62 today, and maybe a grandmother or something.

Oh-kay, this is a bit weird

One of my Charley Project irregulars has been sending me a load of useful stuff lately I haven’t even gotten to yet (I’m not ignoring you, I promise!) and a few days ago I got a strange one: proof that Hilary Harmon Stagg Jr., currently listed on both Charley and Doe as having disappeared at age 16 on some unspecified date in the spring of 1970, was alive and well as late as 1972. She sent me his senior yearbook picture as proof. Websleuths says Hilary disappeared in November 1977, a full seven years after the date I have listed as of this writing. He would have been 23 then.

What…? How on earth did the wires get crossed that badly?

Anyway, I thought I’d let y’all know.

Flashback Friday: Ilonka Cann

This week’s Flashback Friday case is Ilonka Cann, missing from Huntington Mills, Pennsylvania since May 26, 1970. She was 22 years old, married with a baby son. Her Charley Project file doesn’t have much on her but I did find this Official Cold Case Investigations thread which has a little more information, and Pennsylvania Missing Persons appears to have updated her case since I last checked.

Anyway, the story is that her husband left in the morning and when he came back in the afternoon, Ilonka was gone and the baby was in the house alone.

Offhand I would say she’s of Hungarian descent or possibly Slavic — Ilonka is a Hungarian name, a nickname for Ilona. Ilona is used in several Slavic nations; it’s a form of the name Helen. I wonder if she was born here or was an immigrant to this country.

I don’t have enough information to theorize what happened to her. It’s possible that she left on her own. She would be in her sixties now. It’s possible she was harmed, and if that’s the case it’s possible that whoever did it is now deceased. We may never know what happened to this young woman on that spring day 45 years ago.

Flashback Friday: Cynthia Coon

This week’s Flashback Friday case is Cynthia Coon, who disappeared from Washtenaw County in southern Michigan at the age of thirteen, on January 19, 1970. So she’s been missing 43 years and counting. If she’s still alive, she’s 57 years old and quite possibly a grandmother by now.

Cynthia’s case vexes me. It’s one of those where there are juuuust enough details to intrigue you, but not enough for you to figure out what probably happened. Two and a half months after her disappearance, she called home twice — and claimed she didn’t know where she was. Then a month later her family got an “extortion type” call. And that’s all, folks. That’s all there is.

I’m not even going to hazard a guess here; I can think of several possibilities, all of them unlikely. I just figure that whatever happened to Cynthia Coon, it probably wasn’t good.