English woman missing in Cyprus turns up decades later in Arizona, and other stories

Samuel Little, considered to be one of the U.S. most prolific serial killers, has died in prison at age 80. They’re still trying to locate/identify his victims.

In Arizona/England/Cyprus: they’ve found Lee-Tracey Miley, who was reported missing by her son in 2019 but had actually been out of touch with her family since 1991. She went on a vacation to Egypt that year, then traveled to Cyprus (an island nation in the Mediterranean) and never returned. Ms. Miley was located safe in Arizona. She claims she was injured in a car wreck in Cyprus and developed amnesia, and had no recollection of her previous life in Bournemouth, England.

In California: the recent arrest in Michaela Garecht‘s case has given hope for answers to the family of Amanda Nicole Eileen “Nikki” Campbell, a four-year-old girl who disappeared from Fairfield on December 27, 1991. The video clip in this link includes a color photo of Nikki which I had not seen elsewhere, and have added to her casefile.

In Florida: Steve Calkins, a former sheriff’s deputy, has been found not civilly liable for anything in the 2004 disappearance and presumed death of Terrance Deon Williams from Naples. It’s a very peculiar case. Williams’s family had filed a wrongful death suit against Calkins, who is the last person known to have seen Williams and was also the last person known to have seen another missing man, Felipe Santos, who had gone missing under nearly identical circumstances the previous year. The case had been forced into binding arbitration due to an error by the plaintiffs’ attorney, and the arbitrator ruled they had no case against Calkins.

In Iowa: it’s been nearly six months since ten-year-old Breasia Terrell disappeared from Davenport, and here’s a timeline of her case.

In Massachusetts: they’re still looking for Lisa Therisa Hazard, a 29-year-old woman who disappeared from New Bedford in March 2019. She had a drug problem and told her son’s father she was going to check into a rehab center in Fall River, but it’s unclear whether she even ever left New Bedford.

In Missouri: this article honors Marianne Asher-Chapman, who founded Missouri Missing, a nonprofit organization that helps families of people missing in Missouri and publicizes their cases. Asher-Chapman’s daughter, Michelle Angela “Angie” Yarnell, disappeared from Ivy Bend in 2003.

Also in Missouri: they’ve found the remains of Brandon L. Wood, a 23-year-old who disappeared from Mountain Grove in 2015. Curiously, the bones turned up in an area that had been previously searched.

In Ohio: this article talks about cold missing persons cases in Ohio, particularly in Butler County. It mentions Cynthia Louise Carmack, a 15-year-old missing from Hamilton since 1987, and Ronald Henry Tammen Jr., a 19-year-old Ohio University student missing from Oxford since 1953, among others.

In Oregon: this article is about the narrowly averted NamUs defunding and how it would have affected cold cases in that country.

In Texas: Fox San Antonio has released a recording of an interview police did with Elizabeth Johnson, mother of Gabriel Scott Johnson, who disappeared on December 27, 2009 at just seven months old. Elizabeth says she gave Gabriel to another couple to raise, but police have been unable to identify these people and think the child is probably dead. She was convicted of custodial interference and unlawful imprisonment, but acquitted of kidnapping, and was released from prison in 2014.

In Wisconsin: they’ve found the remains of Benjamin D. Bodwin, a 54-year-old man who disappeared from Athelstane in 2018. His death has been ruled a suicide.

In England: the police have released video footage of Steven Clark, a 23-year-old man who disappeared from Marske-by-the-Sea, Cleveland in 1992 and is presumed murdered. His parents were recently arrested and questioned, then released. They deny any involvement in their son’s presumed death and called the idea “absolutely ludicrous.”

In Russia: they’re still looking for Ayana Vinokurova and Alina Ivanova, two three-year-old girls who disappeared from Alina’s grandfather’s yard in a remote village called Sinsk in the far eastern part of the country back in 2013.

Two Smithsonian Magazine articles of note

There are two Smithsonian Magazine articles — one from a few days ago, one from 2013 — that may be of some interest to my readers.

The older one is about a Russian family of four that fled into the taiga to escape Communist persecution and wound up staying there, completely isolated from the rest of mankind, for 40-odd years. The parents had two additional children during this time period. Some geologists discovered them in the 1970s. Long story short, the mother had died by then, three of the four children died relatively soon after their discovery, the father lived into the 1980s, and the single remaining daughter returned to the taiga. I’m not sure if she is still alive, but she would be 72 now if she is. There is a book about the case.

The other is about how melting glaciers are exposing artifacts and dead bodies which were previously trapped in the ice. Some of the bodies are ancient, hundreds or thousands of years old, but others are relatively recent. One find, for example, dates from 1952.

Eighty years ago today…

On April 7, 1933, the grandparents, uncle and one cousin of a Russian boy named Pavel Morozov were shot for his murder. And that’s just about the only thing we know for sure about this case, which I think is a fascinating one, particularly for those interested in Stalin’s Russia. Not so much the murder itself, but what resulted from it.

I worked really hard on this Executed Today entry. I actually started writing it eighteen months ago, back in October/November 2011. You’ll recall that in this entry I talked about a “writing project” I’d been working on:

I discovered I’d apparently tried to work on it after I took the pills: there were pages and pages of complete gibberish. I couldn’t make any sense of it and wound up having to rewrite it all.

Well, this entry was the writing project I’d been working on when I had that crisis that left me with a scar on my hand and a story. I actually completely rewrote the entry twice. The first time was because I’d messed it all up as explained above. The second time was after I read Catriona Kelly’s book (I wrote my first draft of the Morozov entry having read only Druzhnikov’s book) and realized I had to do some serious re-thinking. It’s an unbelievably complicated story and Kelly had such different conclusions than Druzhnikov.

Anyway, I think the entry turned out very well. In addition to all the work I put into it, the Headsman (the guy who runs the Executed Today blog) made some minor edits of his own, mostly making the writing clearer and cleaner. I’m proud of the results here; I think I told Pavlik’s story as thoroughly and succinctly as I could.

Got this email this morning

From one Детей Украина Поиск:

Hi, I volunteer organization “Search for missing children,” we are looking for missing children in countries such as Russia, Ukraine, Belarus and Kazakhstan. Some of our children aged 1 to 5 years are disappearing without a trace. We think that some of them could be taken abroad. We would like to appeal to you to put your photo of these children. If you need help from our organization, we also can help you.
We kindly ask for your help in finding the little Russian boy Maksim Korolev. He was born in 2006 and disappeared in December 8, 2010 in Urupiskiy district of the Volgograd region.
The kid went for a walk and disappeared, his footprints were broken at the side of the road.
The search for the four-year-old Maksim had failed – his whereabouts are still unknown.
We believe that Maxim could be taken out from the Russian Federation.
Signs of a missing child: has 5 years look, growth of 95-110 cm, medium build, oval face, light brown hair, blue eyes.
Special features: has a scar.
For information which will help to find missing child is announced reward.

A beautiful kid. Reminds me a little of the Ben Needham case.

Ildar Gazizulin identified

According to this brief article from a Russian newspaper (it’s in English), the police have identified the body of Ildar Gazizulin, a 39-year-old Russian national who disappeared from Brooklyn almost two years ago. He had been living in the United States since 1992.

The article reveals frustratingly little: not when they found his body, or when he died or how or under what circumstances. I can’t find any other articles about it either. Splerd.

The Romanov children identified

The bodies of the lost children of the Czar Nicholas II of Russia have been identified through DNA testing. They were found in 2007, and there was never any doubt that it was them, but now it’s confirmed.

Nicholas II, his wife the Czarina Alexandra, and their five children, Olga, Tatiana, Maria, Anastasia and Alexei, were assassinated by Russian revolutionaries in 1918. Most of the bodies were located, but the youngest two, 17-year-old Anastasia and 13-year-old Alexei, were missing for nearly a century. I remember the day I heard the two children’s bodies had been found. I got very excited. I’m very interested in history in general and the Czar’s lost children are a famous historical mystery. One woman who called herself Anna Anderson popped up claiming she was Anastasia and had escaped the execution. She managed to convince a lot of people. I’ve seen pictures and the resemblance was striking, but I think mainly it was that people wanted Anastasia to have survived, because she was young and beautiful and innocent and they didn’t want to face the cold hard fact of her murder. (And also, it made for a terrific story.) After her death, DNA tests proved Anna Anderson wasn’t a Romanov.

Those children were killed simply because they happened to be born in the wrong family at the wrong time in history. I hope now they can be buried in a proper grave with their parents and sisters and will rest in peace.

I have a beautiful and haunting song called “Anastasia” which is about Anastasia Romanov, but parts of it could speak for the loved ones of all missing people:

I kept your room just how you left it
There’s not a toy out of place
Just in case the fates are kind and you come back someday
I don’t want to live without my little Anastasia