This week’s featured missing person is Martha Alice Mertz, one of the Charley Project’s older cases: she was last seen on June 22, 1961 in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.
Martha was 47 at the time and would be 108 today if still alive, which seems unlikely. She was between 5’0 and 5’2 and between 100 and 120 pounds, with brown hair and blue eyes, and was last seen wearing a white blouse and black pedal-pusher pants which are basically what they used to call capri pants. My mom (who was a child attending elementary school in 1961) says all the girls had to wear skirts and dresses to school, except for the very last day of classes, during which they were permitted to wear pedal-pushers.
So Martha left home after a heated argument with her husband, and was never seen again. She had left before after had arguments with him, but would always get in touch with someone in the family. This time she didn’t get in touch with anybody.
It’s hard to tell what happened here. Obviously the husband has to be looked at, but a neighbor who overheard their argument that didn’t night said it didn’t seem to be any worse than the others they’d had, and the witness saw and heard no indications of physical violence.
Martha had said before she she wanted to leave her husband and go somewhere else where no one would know, and perhaps she did. It was a lot easier to drop completely out of sight in 1961 than it is now. But if she did she voluntarily drop out of sight, she left everything behind, including thousands of dollars in the bank.
I doubt this case is solvable at this point. Very sad.
As for me: I put up a small update today and everything is resuming as usual. I took a longer break than I thought I would, being horribly tired. I just kind of crashed for awhile.