Black History Month: Wayne Goff

In honor of Black History Month I’m profiling one African-American MP every day on this blog for the month of February. Today’s case is Wayne Kareem Goff, a 17-year-old boy who disappeared from Mattapan, Massachusetts on May 20, 1997.

I don’t have much on Wayne. NamUs has a fingerprint card for him, as he was arrested just three days before he went missing; I don’t know why he was arrested or if this had anything to do with his disappearance. He does have a tattoo saying something like “Hill Boyz” which made me wonder if that was the name of a gang, but I don’t know squat about gangs and Google turned up nothing.

Wayne was listed as a runaway with the NCMEC for quite a long time after he went missing, but now he’s listed as endangered missing. I don’t know why they changed the classification; it can’t be just the length of time, because other people missing as long as Wayne are still listed as runaways. In practice it makes no difference.

If he’s still alive, Wayne would now be 39. He was born in Belize.

National Hispanic Heritage Month: Cesilia Pena

In honor of National Hispanic Heritage Month I’m featuring a Hispanic missing person every day from September 15 to October 15. Today’s case is Cesilia Pena, a fourteen-year-old girl who disappeared from Manhattan on October 6, 1976, while on her way home from St. Alphonsus Commercial High School.

Cesilia lived in the Bronx and took the subway to and from school; this article talks about the route she might have used. She was tiny, less than five feet tall, and she looks very young in her pictures.

She may have been accosted by Anthony “Rudy” Flores while on her way home that day; a witness reported seeing them together, with Flores holding her by the arm. Flores is also a suspect in the disappearance of Nelida Del Valle from Boston later that year.

Joan Risch disappeared 55 years ago today

I got an email from a reporter today about Joan Risch, asking if he could use one of my photos with attribution. It was only then that I realized this was the anniversary of her disappearance. I sort of forgot about it quickly, but I was just on Wikipedia and she’s on the front page today, in the “did you know” section:

joanrisch

(I realize these last few days I’ve posted a lot of images on my blog entries. I think this is just an anomaly and not the start of a trend though.)

It’s a most mysterious case, one that will probably never be solved.

Select It Sunday: Wanda Reine

Mike C. sent in this Sunday selection: Wanda Medeiros Reine, who disappeared from East Falmouth, Massachusetts. (Mike C. also provided an exact date of disappearance for me, which I didn’t have before: March 12, 1971.) So I didn’t have the exact date and still don’t have anything much in the way of a physical description, but her disappearance is hardly lacking in sordid and scandalous details.

Boiled down, it looks like a case of domestic violence turned murder. The prime suspect, Wanda’s husband Melvin Reine Sr., died of Pick’s Disease in 2015.

There’s a book about the case, When Evil Rules: Vengeance and Murder on Cape Cod, about the Reine family’s many criminal misadventures including Wanda’s disappearance and the murder of Melvin’s second wife, Shirley. The library has it. I ought to check it out.

Flashback Friday: Karen O’Donoghue

This week’s Flashback Friday case is Karen O’Donoghue, a young woman who disappeared under unclear circumstances from Massachusetts in 1969. Karen, 25, was engaged to be married. Her NamUs page says, “We believe she left her fiance and no one knows where she went.”

I really don’t have enough to go on here to speculate as to what happened. Did she walk away and make a new life for herself? Was it foul play, at the hands of the fiance possibly?

In any case, if Karen is still alive, she would be about 72 years old today. It’s not too late for her to call home.

Flashback Friday: Gerald Montrio

This week’s Flashback Friday case is Gerald Montrio, who vanished from Plymouth, Massachusetts on September 9, 1957. He disappeared together with his friend Bobby Rasmussen, but I don’t have a photo or any stats for Bobby other than his age — thirteen. Gerald was fifteen.

To all appearances, the boys drowned: their clothes were found by the harbor. But Gerald and Bobby’s sisters think there’s a chance they faked their deaths and ran away to escape a troubled home life.

If he’s still alive, Gerald would be 73 today.

(Appropos of nothing: I got a book out of the  library called Strange Red Cow: And Other Curious Classified Ads from the Past, by Sara Bader. When I took it off the shelf it fell open to a page about ads parents placed regarding missing children, and specifically the Charley Ross case. Strange coincidence.)

A slight bump in my user statistics

I checked my user stats and saw this:

Statistics

It is my understanding that “visits” represent the number of unique visits/visitors to charleyproject.org. And it’s up a bit for some reason. The average is currently 10,134 visitors a day. (Actually it’s 10,133.6; I rounded up. /pedantry) As opposed to last month when the average was 8,339. In May it was 8,171 and in April it was 8,070. Not much of a change there. Every day this month, though, save July 1, the number of visitors has been above the average 8,000-ish range.

Judging by the casefiles my visitors are looking at most often: Caleigh Harrison, Aliayah Lunsford and “Baby Kate” Phillips, I’d say the spike in visits has something to do with that unidentified little girl they found off the case of Massachusetts. I know there’s been speculation that one of the three missing girls could be her. Kristine Hamilton is also being looked at a lot though, and she DEFINITELY isn’t the Massachusetts Baby Doe and I can’t find any recent news about her. Shrug.