Wednesday, December 24, 2008

FOUND SAFE: Heather Deeter

One of my astute readers posted a comment about Heather being found as of August. I also had received an email notification but had just not had time to act on it yet. (My apologies to anyone who was still on the lookout for Heather after she had already been found!)

Anyway, a copy of the recovery notice from my email:

Dear Poster Partner:
Heather Deeter missing from Oil City, PA, has been
recovered. Please discontinue dissemination of this poster. Your participation
in this program has made a valuable contribution to this recovery.
remove and discard any posters on this case that you have placed in public
Thank you for your support.
The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children
Visit our web site at

The email was dated August 27.

FOUND SAFE: Latasha Williams

There is one small typo in this notice: Latasha was from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, not Georgia. Nevertheless, the important thing is that she was found!
Poster Partner program notice as received in my email:
Dear Poster Partner:
Latasha Williams missing from Pittsburgh, GA, has
been recovered. Please discontinue dissemination of this poster. Your
participation in this program has made a valuable contribution to this recovery.
Please remove and discard any posters on this case that you have placed in
public view.
Thank you for your support.
The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children
Visit our web site at

The date on the email was September 12.

FOUND SAFE: Jacqueline (?) and Nevada Azen

While looking over a recent post on this missing mother and daughter, I noticed that their pictures were no longer visible. When pictures are directly linked to the NCMEC website (as theirs were), this can often be a sign that people have been located. After a little digging (i.e., searching on Google), I found the following statement at
Nevada Azen missing from Pittsburgh, PA, has been recovered.

The date on the website is August 19.
There is no mention about Nevada's mother, Jacqueline, who was also missing with her (hence the question mark in the title). Perhaps it is because the site is called National Voice for Children? Another explanation is that on their NCMEC poster (as seen at, Jacqueline is listed as Nevada's "non-custodial mother", and on some sites (such as the case is being treated as a family abduction. So, I suppose it is--hopefully--safe to assume that since Nevada has been found, Jacqueline probably has been as well.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Tanya Kach: Lawsuit dismissed, dismissal being appealed

It's been 2 1/2 years since Tanya was found, but apparently things are not over yet.
Tanya Kach's lawyer to appeal case dismissal
By Jason Cato
Monday, September 15, 2008
A lawyer for a former McKeesport student who
went missing for a decade and surfaced as a kidnapping victim today filed a
notice of appeal, intended to dispute a federal judge's dismissal of claims she
made against her captor's employers.
Tanya Kach went missing in February 1996
and resurfaced in March 2006, after escaping the home of Thomas Hose, who worked
as a security guard for St. Moritz Security Services at the McKeesport Area
middle school she attended. Kach, 26, of Elizabeth filed a federal lawsuit in
September 2006 against Hose for holding her captive. The lawsuit also named as
plaintiffs McKeesport city and police officials for failing to properly
investigate her disappearance; McKeesport school officials for knowing of her
relationship with Hose and failing to stop it; and St. Moritz for failing to
properly train its employee.
U.S. District Judge Gary L. Lancaster dismissed
parts of the lawsuit in April 2007. On Friday, the judge dismissed the remaining
claims, following oral arguments in which a defense lawyer asked that the case
be dismissed because too much time had elapsed.
story continues below
defense claimed the clock started when Hose and Kach began a romantic
relationship, not when she resurfaced in 2006.
Lancaster, although
sympathetic toward Kach's plight, granted the defendants a motion of summary
"(Kach) was victimized not only by an adult who preyed on her, but
by the many adults who failed her," Lancaster wrote in a 23-page memorandum.
"Yet, these circumstances cannot overcome the strong legal precedent supporting
the enforcement of statutes of limitations."
The judge did not rule on other
issues for dismissal raised by the defendants.
Kach's attorney, Lawrence
Fisher, this morning filed notice that he intends to take the matter before the
3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia.
Hose, 50, was not included
in the decision. He is serving 15 years on state charges stemming from Kach's
disappearance. He has never responded to Kach's lawsuit. Kach, at age 14, ran
away Feb. 10, 1996, to live with Hose, who was then 37 and worked as a guard at
her school. She claimed Hose kept her captive until she began gaining some
freedoms and told her story to a local deli owner, who called police.
testified that Hose kept her in an upstairs bedroom for four years before
allowing her to start coming out when his elderly parents weren't home. In 2005,
he changed Kach's name to Nikki Allen and began introducing her to people as his
Jason Cato can be reached at or 412-320-7840.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Billy Smolinski: Search over

Now that the search is over, we are allowed to know what triggered it.

No Body Found In Search For Missing Man
POSTED: 9:50 am EDT August 18, 2008
UPDATED: 3:01 pm EDT August 18, 2008

SEYMOUR, Conn. -- Police said they did not find the
body of a missing man while searching a property on Bungay Road in Seymour.
State police are looking for Billy Smolinski Jr., who
has been missing for nearly four years.
Troopers said they received a tip that his body may have been buried in a metal container.
They have not said whether the search provided them any clues.

If you know anything about what happened to Billy, please call the FBI's New Haven office at (203) 777-6311 or email You can also send a "snail mail" tip to P.O. Box 123, Cheshire, CT 06410.

You can print a poster of Billy at

Billy's website:
MySpace page for Billy:
Billy's guestbook:

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

2008 Missing: Tiffany Siegworth, Carnegie, Pennsylvania

Her photo is two years out of date (according to caption at link), but it seems to be the only one available.


Carnegie police seeking runaway teenage girl
F.A. Krift

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Carnegie police are searching for a teenage girl who detectives believe
ran away 16 days ago with her boyfriend.
Tiffany Marie Siegworth, 15, of
Carnegie might be in the Lawrenceville, Wilkinsburg or Bellevue area, police
said. Her unnamed boyfriend also is considered missing by police.
was last seen by her father July 20 wearing black sweat pants, a black T-shirt
and tennis shoes. She is 5-foot-5 and weighs 150 pounds, and has dyed her blond
hair black, police said.
Anyone with information on Siegworth or her
whereabouts is asked to call Carnegie police Detective Tom Oros at 412-279-4589
or e-mail.

Another article, from, gives slightly more information (date last seen and by whom).
Carnegie Police Need Help Locating Teen
updated 11:47 a.m. ET, Tues., Aug. 5, 2008
CARNEGIE, Pa. - Carnegie police are asking for help from the public to
locate a missing teen. Police said Tiffany Marie Siegworth, 15, was last seen by
her father on July 20. She was with her boyfriend, who is also listed as
Tiffany is a white female, about 150 pounds, 5 foot 5 inches tall,
dyed black hair, blue eyes and was wearing black sweat pants and a black
The teen may be in the Lawrenceville, Wilkinsburg or Bellevue
Anyone with information is asked to call Detective Tom Oros at
412-279-4589 or send an e-mail to

2008 Missing: Thomas Zinza, Emlenton, Pennsylvania

I just discovered Thomas' case on the North American Missing Persons Network. It was just added there July 31.
Thomas Joel Zinza
Vital Statistics at Time of Disappearance
Missing Since: February 19, 2008 from Emlenton, Pennsylvania
Date Of Birth: February 5, 1966
Age: 42
Height: 5'8"
Weight: 202 lbs
Hair Color: Brown (going gray and bald)
Eye Color: Hazel
Race: White
Gender: Male
Distinguishing Characteristics: Tattoo of a small
trout on upper arm gold crowns on molars, previously fractured right ankle,
herniated disk, chronic knee pain
Medical Conditions: He is diagnosed with
paranoid schizophrenia and is currently not taking his medication.
Clothing: Usually wore wool clothing, hunting coats, preferred brand was "Filson"
expensive hunting boots or footware, "Carharts" and flannel shirts, occasionally
wore baseball style hats
AKA: Tom, Tommy, Zinz
Case Number: 08-14273
NCIC Number: M-257212634 .
Details of DisappearanceThomas left
Fairbanks, AK and flew to Cleveland, OH. On February 17, 2008 he rented a
vehicle and drove to Emlenton, PA where he checked into the motor Inn on
February 17th. The car was located at the Emlenton Motor Inn, on
Emlenton-Clintonville Road, on February 27, 2008. There was no sign of Mr. Zinza
and it is possible that he had left the motor inn before February 19th. Tom may
be heading towards Vermont to a cabin he visited as a child.
Investigating Agency
If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:
Alaska State Police
(907) 451-5100
You can print a poster of Thomas at

Billy Smolinski: New search!!

There are several news articles on this, but I will just post three of them. Hopefully they find something helpful. If they have been at it for five days, then maybe the police/FBI think they're on to something. (A fourth article, which I have not posted, calls it "the most significant [tip] yet".)

Authorities dig for missing man in Seymour
By: Michelle Tuccitto Sullo,
Naugatuck Valley Bureau Chief
SEYMOUR - Investigators on Monday
continued excavating property on Bungay Road in the search for a Waterbury man
who has been missing for four years.
The search began at the 160 Bungay Road site over the weekend.
The missing man, William Smolinski Jr., was last seen on Aug. 24, 2004.
Smolinski had asked a neighbor in Waterbury to watch his dog, a German shepherd,
for a few days then disappeared, according to the Federal Bureau of
Investigation. Smolinski indicated that he was going to look at a car he was
interested in buying. No one heard from him in a few days, and his family
contacted Waterbury police. Smolinski left behind his vehicle, wallet and keys,
according to police, and hasn't been heard from since.
A police van blocked the driveway to the property on Monday afternoon as
the search continued. Several media outlets waited at the property for an
announcement on the outcome of the search.
The Seymour Public Works Department is helping with the effort, which
involves the use of excavation equipment.
State police said Monday that the systematic search of the private property
is being done with the full cooperation of the property owner, who police said
"has no involvement whatsoever in this investigation."
In May 2007, investigators searched properties in Shelton in connection
with the Smolinski case with the help of search dogs, but came up empty.
Smolinski was 31 years old at the time of his disappearance. He had worked
as an apprentice heating and air-conditioning technician and as a part-time tow
truck driver. Smolinski also mowed lawns and plowed driveways in his spare time,
according to the FBI.
Register reporter Patricia Villers contributed to this report.
Billy's mother's reaction, from

Mother Still Awaiting Son's Return
Son Has Been Missing For 4
POSTED: 6:35 pm EDT August 12, 2008
UPDATED: 8:47 pm EDT August 12,

SEYMOUR, Conn. -- Janice Smolinski said she’s been waiting
nearly four years for her son to come home.
"We didn't give up, and we're
not going to give up," she said. "We going to continue until we get our
William Smolinski had asked a friend to walk his dog, but never
dropped off the keys to his house. The 31-year-old construction worker from
Waterbury disappeared without telling anyone where he was going.
"'No body,
no case' is what we were told in the beginning, and that isn't so," Janice said.
"You evaluate every situation."
For the past four days, police have been
digging at a home on Bungay Road in Seymour based on leads they have obtained.
Last summer, acting on another tip, police dug up a driveway outside a home
in Shelton. Nothing was found there, they said.
The latest update, from

Wednesday, August 13, 2008 8:00 AM EDT
Search for clues in 2004 disappearance continues
The search for evidence in the 2004 disappearance of
Billy Smolinski Jr. continued on Tuesday on Bungay Road, but investigators were
unable to uncover additional clues at the site, according to state police.
State and local police began excavating property at 160 Bungay Road on
Friday. Excavators from the town's Public Works Department continued to dig
Saturday, Monday and Tuesday. According to Trooper William Tate, a state police
spokesman, digging might continue today.
Smolinski was 31 when he disappeared from his Waterbury home in 2004. City
police eventually turned over their investigation to the FBI. Authorities have
investigated leads that have led them to a driveway in Shelton and now the
21-acre farmland on Bungay Road. Police did not find evidence in Shelton that
Smolinski was buried there and, so far, haven't found any clues here.
If you know anything about what happened to Billy, please call the FBI's New Haven office at (203) 777-6311 or email You can also send a "snail mail" tip to P.O. Box 123, Cheshire, CT 06410.

Photo and candle graphic from Billy's MySpace.

Cody Haynes: New age progression!

Finally something new in the case of Richard Lee Haynes, Jr., better known as "Cody". Granted, a very small something, but maybe it can still help somehow.
Cody's NCMEC poster:

Endangered Missing
DOB: Apr 16, 1993
Missing: Sep 12, 2004
Age Now: 15
Sex: Male
Race: White
Hair: Brown
Eyes: Blue
Height: 5'0" (152 cm)
Weight: 90 lbs (41 kg)
Missing From:
United States
Age Progressed
Richard is shown age-progressed
to 15 years. He was last seen at home on September 12, 2004. Richard has a round
birthmark on his right inner thigh. He may go by the nickname Cody.
National Center for Missing & Exploited Children
1-800-843-5678 (1-800-THE-LOST)
Kittitas Police Department (Washington) 1-509-925-8534
MySpace page for Cody (run by one of his parents):

Arkadiy Tashman: Out of the Darkness walk team in his honor

Update - 10/17/08 - The Out of the Darkness Walk raised a total of over $13,000 and had a great turnout! For more details, see
Out of the Darkness Community walks are a project of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. (When Arkadiy disappeared, he left behind a possible suicide note.)
This particular Out of the Darkness walk is being held in Staten Island. Information below from

The Sheds' Fundraising Page
Staten Island Walk
September 28, 2008 at Clove Lakes Park
So there's a walk going on in
Staten Island at Clove Lakes Park on September 28th.
I registered to be part of the walk and set a fund raising goal of $750. If
we can get more money, great, if not, even being there is still nice
If you register for the walk you don't HAVE to donate anything, but even
one dollar is helpful. All the donations go towards Ark's family and other
families out there who have lost loved ones to suicide or disapearances.
I started a team for the walk called 'The Sheds' so if you register for the
walk, sign up to be part of that team.
Please come out and walk with me on September 28th, even if you don't want
to walk, at least register for the event so that we could show his family that
we haven't forgotten about him.
To all people that didn't know Ark, he was an amazing person and extremely
generous, and if you have a heart, or even if you just have nothing to do that
day, sign up and walk anyway.
i think it would be nice if everyone part of 'The Sheds' team went over to
the sheds or something. I understand the sheds have been taken down, but it's
the thought that counts. Maybe we'll just set up a picnic at clove lakes and
hang out or go over to a diner or something. It will all be figured out, the
important thing though is the walk.
Donating online is safe and easy! To make an online donation please search
for one of the participants and then click the "Support This Participant" button
on their page. Donations can only be made to individuals, but the total each
participant raises goes toward our team goal.
Thank you for visiting the The Sheds fundraising page!

So far they have raised $525. Online donations can be made at the link above.
One of the people on the team is his sister and the others apparently are his friends.

Meanwhile, if you know anything about what happened to Arkadiy, please call the New York City police at (212) 694-7781 or the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children at 1-800-THE-LOST (1-800-843-5678).

You can print a poster of Arkadiy at (Be sure to change your Page Set-up to "Landscape", or some information will be cut off.)

Arkadiy's sister's blog:
MySpace page for Arkadiy:

Monday, July 28, 2008

Found safe: Katherine Soto

A few days ago I had posted a notice I had received that Katherine had been "restricted", which usually means investigators are close to finding her. Well, now here is the official recovery notice, received in my email this morning:
Dear Poster Partner:
Katherine Soto missing from Greenville, SC, has
been recovered. Please discontinue dissemination of this poster. Your
participation in this program has made a valuable contribution to this recovery.
Please remove and discard any posters on this case that you have placed in
public view.
Thank you for your support.
The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children
Visit our web site at

The restriction notice had been received last Wednesday, July 23.

Found safe: Dominique Watts

This came as a pleasant surprise! From my email notice:
Dear Poster Partner:
Dominique Watts missing from Pittsburgh, PA, has
been recovered. Please discontinue dissemination of this poster. Your
participation in this program has made a valuable contribution to this recovery.
Please remove and discard any posters on this case that you have placed in
public view.
Thank you for your support.
The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children
Visit our web site at

I just received that today!

Saturday, July 26, 2008

2008 Missing: Faime Francis, Swissvale, Pennsylvania

I just found her case on the North American Missing Persons Network today, though she had been on the site for longer. Her case was recently moved from their "Hot Cases" section to the regular "Missing Persons" section.
Faime Lynette Francis
Vital Statistics at Time of Disappearance
Missing Since: March 28, 2008 from Swissvale, Pennsylvania
Classification: Endangered Missing
Date Of Birth: May 28, 1977
Height: 5'8"
Weight: 115 lbs.
Hair Color: Black
Eye Color:
Dark Brown
Race: Black-African American
Gender: Female
Distinguishing Characteristics:She may be wearing a wig or have weave added
to her hair.
Medical Conditions: She suffers from Schizophrenia/Bipolar
Disorder and does not have her medicine with her.
Clothing: Unknown, but she
prefers to dress in all black.
Jewelry: Engagement type ring on her left hand.
Details of Disappearance
Faime left her residence on March 28, 2008 and has not been heard from
since. She has a mental illness and needs her medications.
Investigating Agency
If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:
Swissvale Police Department
Officer Costa
(412) 271-0430
Source Information
Frank & DeNita Francis - Faime's Parents

Faime is also listed on, which includes a way to leave tips online. It also says she is registered with the NCIC (National Crime Information Center).

Cynthia Day: Story featured on another blog

Hopefully the writer does not mind me reposting it here. It is a very thorough and well done story, and there was much that I did not know before. They included a description of Cynthia, phone numbers for contact information, and even the address of her website. The one more thing they could have included was a picture.
The date on the page was July 8, so it is probably quite up-to-date.
Story from

The Missing - A Weekly exposé of Lost Souls - Issue #19
In this week's
edition of "The Missing," we revisit the mysterious disappearance of Cynthia
Louise Day, a 38-year-old resident of East St. Louis, Illinois, who went missing
on Aug. 10, 1990.
"I was 18-years-old and fresh out of high school when my
mom disappeared," Cynthia's daughter, Melody, said in a telephone interview with
Investigation Discovery. "On the day she went missing my sister, Kimberly, had
just come home from the hospital with her son. My mom was excited, so my sister
and I went over to her house so she could get to know her new grandbaby. My mom
took him around and proudly introduced him to all the neighbors. We had a good
time. We did not know it when we left, but that would prove to be the last time
that we ever saw her."
Approximately one week later, Melody and Kimberly
became concerned because they had not heard from their mother. It was unlike her
to stay out of contact for such a long period of time, so the girls decided to
go check on her. To their surprise, their mother, along with her boyfriend of
seven years, had vanished. In addition, all of their possessions were also
"My mother was into beauty and fashion and everything – clothes,
makeup, perfumes – was all gone" Melody said, adding, "We did not even find a
single toothbrush."
Both girls were young at the time and neither of them had
any idea what to do, so they went to the East St. Louis Police Department and
filed a missing person report. It was their hope that the police, people they
felt were skilled and knowledgeable in missing person cases, would be able to
uncover the mystery of their mother's disappearance.
"With each year that
passed by, I just assumed that the police were investigating the case," Melody
said. "I would call them whenever I heard they had found a body and would check
to see if it was my mom, but they always said it was not her. Then, in 2004,
when I needed a police report to get the website going and all this stuff, I
discovered that they had never even opened a case. We resolved the issue but
from that day forward I decided to do everything in my power to find out what
happened to my mother."
As part of her own investigation, Melody went back to
the neighborhood where her mother had lived and discovered that many of her
mom's old neighbors suspected that Cynthia's boyfriend had something to do with
her disappearance. This was something that Cynthia's daughters had also
considered because, according to Melody, their mother had allegedly voiced her
unhappiness about the relationship the last time they spoke. In addition, there
was another incident that had occurred prior to Cynthia's disappearance, which
her daughters found troubling.
"Sometime before they went missing, my uncle
Wayne supposedly shot himself in front of my mom and her boyfriend," Melody
said. "The entire thing is strange and my family is convinced that Wayne did not
commit suicide. We think that something happened to him and that my mom
witnessed it."
The case took another unusual twist about five years ago, when Melody
discovered her mom's boyfriend was being held in a California Prison. She cannot
recall the exact charges but said she believes they had to do with an armed
"He never once contacted us to tell us that our mom was not with
him," Melody said. "Why didn't he say, 'where's my old lady, where's your
According to Melody, an officer in California questioned her mom's
ex-boyfriend but he claimed to have no knowledge of what happened to
"The officer in California who questioned him told me he is convinced
this guy did something to both my mom and my uncle," Melody said. "He gave my
local police department permission to come down there and question the guy but
they said they did not have the money. I offered to buy the plane tickets myself
but they would not take me up on the offer."
The boyfriend was paroled from
prison two years ago and to date Illinois investigators have yet to question
"Getting the cops to do something is like pulling teeth," Melody said.
"I've been the detective on this case for a long time. Two plus two equals four
and if the police had done their job they would have had this case solved a long
time ago. To know that the cops are not doing anything is frustrating. They take
more interest in an animal stuck in a tree than a missing person. We know my
mother is not alive, we just want to put her to rest whatever way we
When asked what she would like to say to her mother, Melody
"I love and miss you so much. I am still looking for you all these
years later and will continue to look for you until I find you. You have a
beautiful family that is still hopeful. We will do whatever we can to keep your
memory alive."
Yesterday, Investigation Discovery contacted East St. Louis
police Capt. Lenzie Stewart and asked him if he could provide any information on
the case. Stewart had this to say:
"At this particular time we don't have
very much going for that. We have elicited the Illinois State Police to help us
… What has happened there is we have got DNA from the family members and we are
trying to run that through our database to see if we get any pop-ups on any Jane
Does we have found … I am not actively investigating the case and cannot answer
any further questions at this time."
Stewart referred further questions to
the investigator who is handling the case for the Illinois State Police; however
that investigator was unavailable for comment.
Cynthia Louise Day, nickname
"Peaches," would be 55-years-old today. She is described as a white female, 5'2"
tall, 125 lbs., with blonde hair and blue eyes. She has a hysterectomy scar and
is missing an eye tooth on the left side. Anyone with information is asked to
call the East St. Louis Police Department (Case # ES-04-06787) at 618-482-6724
or the Illinois State Police at 618-346-3781.
For more information or to
help, please visit:
Also, according to the latest posts on Cynthia's guestbook, her flyer will be displayed at a missing persons' rally in Waterbury, Connecticut, on August 23. She is also one of the missing persons being honored in the making of a special quilt, which will also be at the rally.

Jason Jolkowski: Missing persons bill pending in state legislature

The article is more about the bill and missing/unidentified persons cases in general than about Jason, but it is very informative.

Missing person cases in Nebraska go unsolved
By: Jon Burleson
Updated 07/12/2008 05:06:03 AM EDT
In Douglas County, law enforcement
lists 1,850 people missing. About half the cases involve children.
On June13,
2001, Jason Jolkowski, then 19, became a statistic. Since that day, his mother,
Kelly, has been striving to make him more than that to lawmakers.
"Nobody knows how big an issue this is," Jolkowski said. "Those who are
missing are more than a height, weight, hair and eye color. They are
After laboring on behalf of missing persons for the last seven years,
Jolkowski has mobilized a new effort to get law enforcement the tools they need
to help families of the missing. Campaign for the Missing is a grassroots effort
to pass legislation in each state that will serve to improve the law enforcement
community's ability to locate and ensure a safe return of missing persons.
"This is so needed," she said. "Things fall through the cracks. Families
aren't told to get vital pieces of information that could help them solve the
The campaign's central focus will address the national problems of missing
persons and the identification of human remains and provide the framework for
improving law enforcement's response. It will also improve the collection of
critical information about missing persons, prioritize high-risk missing persons
cases and ensure prompt dissemination of critical information to other law
enforcement agencies and the public that can improve the likelihood of a safe
"Most law enforcement officers are not trained in missing persons cases,"
Jolkowski said. "Some police academies don't even teach about missing persons
The Department of Justice, working with federal, state and local law
enforcement; coroners and medical examiners; victim advocates; forensic
scientists; key policymakers; and family members who have lived through this
tragic experience, developed the legislation to be presented in the Nebraska
The bill made it mandatory for law enforcement to follow certain procedures
at the beginning of a missing persons case. Certain steps need to be taken in a
specific order and resources must be allocated to assist, Jolkowski said.
"Nobody told me to get his toothbrush or his comb," she said, "and by the
time I knew, it was too late."
On almost a daily basis, unidentified bodies are found across the country.
Over the last year, law enforcement agencies have reported from 40-50,000 bodies
with no means to identify them, Jolkowski said. These bodies are usually buried
or even cremated with no DNA saved for the possibility of a future
"The families of those missing live in a horrible limbo of not knowing,"
Jolkowski said. "These families need an answer and this legislation could help
provide an answer."
Having run into a roadblock in the last Unicameral session, Jolkowski has
been waiting patiently for the next session. Patience is something she has
developed over the last seven years.
But, she has not been idle. Jolkowski has been working with Nebraska
legislators, such as Steve Lathrop and Brad Ashford to move the bill forward
this time around.
"Last time, I was told that the $50,000 needed to run the program each year
wasn't available," she said. "I feel that if Nebraskans knew how many people go
missing each year, they would be willing to help find them."
If you are interested in helping make a difference in the lives of
thousands of missing persons and their families, send an email to
If you know anything about what happened to Jason, please call the Omaha Police Department at (402) 444-5818 or (402) 444-5690.

Project Jason is conducting a special fundraising campaign in honor of Jason's 27th birthday, and they are already more than 2/3 of the way to their goal! For more information, see
You can also "adopt" Jason through Project Jason's "Adopt a Missing Person" program. Learn more about this at
Photo and age progression of Jason from his poster.

Audrey Herron: Riding for Audrey 2008

The following article was originally published by The Daily Mail Online but seems to have been taken down. So, instead, I have copied it from a post on the Crime and Justice forum (

After six painful years, search for Audrey continues
July 20, 2008
EARLTON — It’s been more than half a decade since Audrey May Herron
disappeared without a trace, leaving family and friends desperately wondering
what happened to the mother of three. But six years later, they continue to hold
out hope, and add to the reward for information leading to a solution to the
heart-breaking mystery.
On Saturday, the sixth annual Riding for Audrey was held, an annual
fundraiser and awareness campaign designed to ensure the community does not
forget her, and with the hope that someone may remember something.
Well over 100 motorcycle riders completed a ride that started at Brennan’s
on Route 81 in Earlton on Saturday morning, headed out to The Hideaway in
Athens, then on to Blackthorne Resort in East Durham, Gardner’s Brass Rail in
Greenville, and then back to Earlton.
“It means a lot that so many people came out to raise money for my mother,
and to help find her,” said Herron’s daughter, Sonsia Rae Court. She was 10
years old when her mother disappeared. Her siblings, Katie and Quinn, were just
4 and 2 at the time.
Proceeds from the ride, and the fundraising activities that followed, were
donated to the Audrey May Herron reward fund, and to the Center for Hope, an
organization that helps families search for and find missing loved ones.
“We hope to get Audrey’s face out there so one day, someone may come
forward with information that may help find her, and at the same time, help this
organization that helps so many others,” said Michelle Turk, Herron’s
Audrey May Herron, 32, of Freehold disappeared on Aug. 29, 2002 when she
headed home from her job in a Catskill nursing home. She started making her
regular trek home — 12 miles away — but never arrived. She has not been seen
since, despite an extensive air and ground search by State Police, friends and
family. Her 1994 Jeep Cherokee has also disappeared.
Since then, there has been no credible evidence or clues to Herron’s
whereabouts, despite investigations by state police, the FBI, and even a private
investigator hired by Herron’s family. However, her friends and family continue
to search for an answer, and to maintain a tireless effort to keep her name and
face in the public eye with the hope that someone, somewhere, may have valuable
Herron’s friends and family also hope to shine a light on the plight of
other families with missing loved ones, and the fears and frustrations they face
every single day.
“This is something that really needs to be supported. The missing person
problem is only getting bigger. You see stories about missing people in the news
all the time, but you never hear about the people who have been missing for a
long time,” said friend Maria Ferencz. “If someone knows something, how long are
they waiting to come forward? She has three kids who want to know what happened
to their mother. It’s just not fair.”
Anyone with information about Audrey May Herron’s disappearance should call
the New York State Police at (518) 622-8600.

Audrey's website:
Photos from Audrey's poster.

Friday, July 25, 2008

CUE Center's 2008 On the Road to Remember Tour update

Among the many missing persons (and a few homicide victims) who are being included in the tour are a few that have been posted on this blog: Audrey May Herron (from Catskill, New York), Audrey Lyn Nerenberg (from Brooklyn, New York), William "Billy" Smolinski, Jr. (Waterbury, Connecticut), Cynthia Day (East Saint Louis, Illinois), and Jason Jolkowski (Omaha, Nebraska). In total there are 110 missing people and six murder victims featured.

So far there are stops planned in the states of North Carolina, West Virginia, New York, Connecticut, New Jersey, New Hampshire, Maryland, Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky, Illinois, Missouri, and Tennessee.

For a complete list of both stops and featured people, as well as some background information on the event, see

Note: Locations for missing people are according to those given in the document, so they may different from what is stated elsewhere on this blog.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

2008 Missing: Jamal Christian, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Jamal's poster was just emailed to me within the past month through the NCMEC's Poster Partner program. His information:

Endangered Runaway

DOB: May 3, 1993
Missing: May 26, 2008
Height: 5'8" (173 cm)
Eyes: Brown
Race: Black
Age Now: 15
Sex: Male
Weight: 185 lbs (84 kg)
Hair: Black
Missing From:
United States
Jamal was last seen on May 26, 2008. He may still be in
the local area.
National Center for Missing & Exploited Children
1-800-843-5678 (1-800-THE-LOST)
Pittsburgh Police Department
(Pennsylvania) 1-412-323-7800

You can print your own copy to display at (Be sure to first change your "Page Setup" to "Landscape", or some information might be cut off.)

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Lachlan Duffley now missing 7 years, Potomac, Maryland

Lachlan Yukihiro Kishida Duffley

Vital Statistics at Time of
Missing Since: June 24, 2001 from Potomac, Maryland
Classification: Family Abduction
Date of Birth: January 26, 1989
Age: 12 years old
Height and Weight: 4'11, 90 pounds
Characteristics: Asian male. Brown hair, brown eyes. Duffley is pictured wearing
eyeglasses in the photo above, but he may not be wearing them now. He has
birthmarks on both his temples and a scar on his back. Duffley speaks fluent

Details of Disappearance
Duffley was abducted by his
non-custodial mother, Yukiko Kishida. A felony warrant was issued for the
abductor on August 31, 2001. They may still be in the state of Maryland, or they
may have traveled to Pennsylvania or out of the country to Japan. Duffley's case
remains unsolved; neither he nor his mother have ever been heard from again.

Yukiko Kishida
Date of Birth: March 29, 1968
Age: 33 years old
Height and Weight: 5'5, 110 pounds
Distinguishing Characteristics: Asian female. Black hair, brown eyes.
Kishida speaks fluent Japanese. Her ears are pierced, and she has a birthmark
between her eyes.

Investigating Agency
If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:
Montgomery County Police Department

Lachlan is also listed on the websites of the Children's Rights Network in Japan, the Children's Rights Council of Japan, For the Lost, and CourtTV.

Lachlan was one of several missing children featured on Briny Baird's golf bags during tournaments back in 2004. (For more details see

Unfortunately I cannot find a poster for Lachlan. He seems to have been listed by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children at some point, but perhaps his poster has been taken down from the website.

Sabrina Kahler now missing 6 years, Springfield Township, Erie County, Pennsylvania

Sabrina Kahler's disappearance seems to be a cold case. However, while Googling her name, I did find an article from just last month on the person she was last seen with.

Man accused of making time
Insurance-fraud suspect charged with false accident report
Published: May 17. 2008 6:00AM
Police said the evidence in a fraud case against Lake City
resident David S.L. Heck is as clear as the time of day.
Heck, who has a prior record and who is connected to the disappearance of
an Erie woman, is accused of trying to defraud his insurance company by falsely
reporting the time of an auto accident.
Police allege he misreported the time to further his scheme to reinstate
his auto insurance and thus get coverage for the crash.
Heck's auto insurance with GEICO had lapsed because of nonpayment when the
crash actually occurred --sometime before 8:21 p.m. on Feb. 18 at Lake Pleasant
and Arbuckle roads in Millcreek Township, police said.
Millcreek police allege Heck, 32, called GEICO about an hour after the
accident, at 9:36 p.m., to reinstate his insurance. And the next morning, police
said, Heck called GEICO again to report the previous day's accident.
Police said Heck told GEICO the accident occurred at 10:30 p.m. on Feb. 18
-- or about two hours after police said it actually happened, and about an hour
after Heck had reinstated his insurance.
The accident involved Heck's 2000 Dodge Ram truck, a Millcreek Township
snowplow and another vehicle, police said. Police said no one was seriously
injured in the crash, but that police responded to it and recorded the time it
was reported -- 8:21 p.m. on Feb. 18. Police did not have an amount for the cost
of the damages.
Heck, of the 9000 block of Middle Road, is accused of the felony charge of
making a fraudulent statement to an insurance company. He was not charged with
driving without insurance because that charge has a 30-day statute of
limitations, Millcreek police Capt. Harry Love said.
District Judge Susan Strohmeyer arraigned Heck on Friday and jailed him on
$2,500 bond at the Erie County Prison, where Heck remained Friday night.
Heck is the same person last seen with Sabrina Kahler, the Erie woman who
has been missing since June 2002. One of Heck's lawyers has said Heck is not a
suspect in that case.
Kahler left home the morning of June 24, 2002, to go swimming. She never
returned and left few clues to her disappearance, police said. The 20-year-old
woman was last seen at the Tasty Twist ice cream stand on Old Lake Road in
Springfield Township. She had gone there with Heck after the two went swimming
at nearby Eagley Park.
Heck told police later that he then dropped off Kahler at the West Erie
Plaza and gave her money to see a movie. Police have not been able to confirm
the story.
In the case over the accident, Millcreek police Sgt. Scott Heidt
investigated as part of the department's insurance-fraud unit. According to the
criminal complaint, a GEICO investigator contacted Millcreek police to start the
Police used Heck's conversations with GEICO representatives to build the
case against him. According to the criminal complaint, a GEICO representative
telephoned Heck on Feb. 19, after he had reported the accident.
During that interview, police said in the complaint, Heck again said the
accident had occurred at 10:30 p.m. rather than 8:21 p.m. -- the time recorded
on the police's accident report.
ED PALATTELLA can be reached at 870-1813 or by e-mail.

If you know what happened to Sabrina, please call the Erie Police Department at (814) 870-1506.

Photo of Sabrina from her poster.

Aarys Oberlander-Hower: Poster update

The possible locations have changed.
I wonder why this is listed just as "missing" and not as "family abduction". Perhaps it is not established that he is with his father?
From Aarys' poster:


DOB: Jun 5, 1996
Missing: Nov 6, 2006
Height: 4'9" (145 cm)
Eyes: Brown
Race: White
Age Now: 12
Sex: Male
Weight: 65 lbs (29 kg)
Hair: Lt. Brown
Missing From:
United States
Aarys was last seen on November 6, 2006. He may be in the
company of his non-custodial father. They are believed to be in Cyprus or
Bahrain. Aarys has a scar under his right eye and a scar under his
National Center for Missing & Exploited Children
1-800-843-5678 (1-800-THE-LOST)
Federal Bureau of Investigation
(Pennsylvania) 1-412-432-4000
You can print a poster to put up at

Arkadiy Tashman: DNA test results negative

About a month and a half ago I had posted that Arkadiy's family's DNA was tested against that from an unidentified body.
Anyway, the following message was posted on the Yahoo! ColdCases group on May 15 (Sorry I am so late in providing this update!):

The DNA samples of Arkadiy's family that were tested against the remains
his sister Natalya had been contacted about are not the remains of
Tashman according to te DNA results. The samples taken from Arkadiy's
will, as a result, be making it's way to the National Database.
Paul Thompson,
Friends of Arkadiy

Please call the New York City police at (212) 694-7781 or the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children at 1-800-THE-LOST (1-800-843-5678) if you have any idea what happened to Arkadiy.

Natalya's blog for Arkadiy:

Photo from Arkadiy's poster

Jason Jolkowski: News article on birthday and fundraiser

Article from

Remembering Jason: Helping Find Others
Posted: June 24, 2008 09:58 PM EDT
Updated: June 24, 2008 09:58 PM EDT


Omaha (KPTM) - He vanished without a trace seven years ago.
Jolkowski would be 27 years old this June 24th.
So on his birthday, his
family reflects on his life and want to share a very special gift.
"It would
be so wonderful to be able to buy you a gift and sing Happy Birthday to you,
even in our funny, off-key way," reads Kelly Jolkowski.
It's a birthday
letter with words of love, hope and reflection Kelly wrote to her son.
reflect on him as a person. We miss his laughter and his kind generous
Tuesday, June 24th is the 7th birthday the Jolkowski's celebrate
without him.
Jason Jolkowski disappeared without a trace from his Benson home
seven years ago.
He would be 27 years old.
"It's still extremely difficult
to not know anything to not know is he dead, is he alive, is he okay, did
somebody hurt him. Why?" says Kelly.
And while the Jolkowski's don't have
those answers, they do have Project Jason, a non-profit organization dedicated
to help other families like theirs.
"We need the public's help to find Jason,
to remember the missing, other families like ours and to help us accomplish our
Kelly says since she can't give her son a gift this year, she hopes
the public will give in his honor by donating at least $27 dollars to Project
It's a gift that Kelly says she hopes will help find Jason, and help
other families.
But, more than anything it's a gift she says Jason would
"That's part of the birthday campaign we know that with his generous
spirit, he would want us to do this," says Kelly.
The Carole Sund Foundation
continues to offer a five-htousand dollar reward for any information that leads
to Jason.
Money raised from Jason's Girthday Gift campaign will ehlp with the
operating costs of Project Jason pay for awareness programs, fund an upcoming
retreat and help pay for ads of missing people on area bus benches.
You can
donate by logging on to
You can donate through PayPal or
mail a check.
Jason's mom also says there are updated posters with Jason's
age progressed photo. The family would appreciate any help if people can print
out the poster and put them up in their neighborhoods or where they work.

If you know anything about what happened to Jason, please call the Omaha Police Department at (402) 444-5818 or (402) 444-5690.

Jason's website:
Jason's guestbook:
You can print a poster of Jason at

Jason is also one of the missing people you can "adopt" through Project Jason's Adopt a Missing Person program. For more information, see

Photo and age progression from Jason's poster.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Jason Jolkowski now missing 7 years, Omaha, Nebraska

Some new developments in Jason's case include a reward and a new age progression. Project Jason, a missing person's organization founded by his mother, also is starting a new fundraising campaign to mark his birthday, which is also coming up in a few days.
The Carole Sund/Carrington Foundation 301 Downey Ave., Modesto, CA, Ph.
209- 567-1059
Scott Webb – Executive Director
June 10, 2008
Contact: Scott Webb 209-567-1059
$5,000 REWARD
The Carole Sund/Carrington Foundation is offering a $5,000 reward for
information leading to the safe return of Jason Jolkowski. If a homicide has
occurred the reward will automatically revert to the arrest and conviction of
the person/persons responsible for the crime.
It has been our experience that reward funds have been the catalyst to
increased interest and investigative leads in cases. We hope that a reward will
assist in this case as well. The Foundation's reward money has already assisted
in the location of nine missing persons, the apprehension of 37 murder suspects,
and 3 kidnappers of young children, and one suspect charged with attempted
murder of a peace officer. We currently have 37 suspects in custody in ten
To date the Foundation has paid a total of $262,600 in rewards to citizens
who did the right thing by coming forward and sharing the information they had
regarding these cases. We all have a responsibility to do our part to help make
our community a safe place.
Carole and Juli Sund and Silvina Pelosso were the three women sightseers
who were missing and later found murdered near Yosemite National Park in
February of 1999. While they were missing, Carole Sund’s parents, Francis and
Carole Carrington, at the request of the FBI, posted rewards both for their safe
return and for information leading to the whereabouts of their rental car. The
Carringtons believe that the posting of these rewards and the media attention
they received contributed to the car being located and gave them the first break
in their case. They were thankful that they had the financial means to offer
these rewards and it’s because of this that they have started The Carole
Sund/Carrington Foundation. This foundation was established to assist in cases
such as the case of Jason Jolkowski, which is a similar circumstance as the
Carrington’s in that Jason is a missing person.
We strongly urge anyone with information to contact the investigators.
Please if you know anything about this case, call Detective Jim Shields of the
Omaha Police Department at 402-444-5818.
Now the announcement from the Project Jason forum,
June 13, 2008 marks seven years since the mysterious and tragic
disappearance of Jason Jolkowski, the namesake of our organization. His 27th
birthday is June 24th.
In honor of Jason, his birthday and his generous spirit, we are launching a
fundraising campaign. The birthday present image at the bottom of our main site
will be used to show our progress toward the goal of raising $2,700 by October
6th, the 5th anniversary of Project Jason.
You will find a quick reference to Project Jason’s accomplishments and
information about how we utilize donations by continuing to scroll down in this
Please feel free to forward this information.
What follows is a letter written by Jason's mother, Kelly, to mark this sad
Dear Jason,
We love you and miss you. It’s been seven years since we last saw your face
and heard your gentle laugh. Wherever you are, you’re now a grown man. You were
just a young adult when you were last with us, working to find your place in
this life.
The month of June is such a trying time of year. You disappeared without a
trace on June 13th, 2001. Sometimes it seems as if it was just yesterday. The
great fear and pounding of our hearts when we discovered something was very
wrong is a feeling we’ll never forget. We waited and hoped that you’d walk in
the door a moment later and that the whole awful event would be over, but that
didn’t happen. Seven years later, it feels as if it never may end, and that we
may have to wait for our life after this world to see you again. Even so, we
will always have hope to find you sooner, and that you will be with us again.
Love always hopes, and we have hearts full of both.
Father’s Day and my birthday were also events of that fateful month, and
without you, those dates seemed meaningless.
June 24th is your 27th birthday. It would be so wonderful to be able to buy
you a gift and sing Happy Birthday to you, even in our funny, off-key way. There
is so much that we’ve all missed. If you are still with us, you could be married
and have children. You may have graduated from college and be pursuing a career.
So many life events which normally happen with someone of your age may have
passed by. We hope and pray that you haven’t been cheated of the life you were
meant to live.
We feel that somehow, you are aware of how life has changed for us in your
absence. Your little brother has grown up now and works with your dad. He misses
you so.
Because of you, we were called to reach out and help others who have fallen
victim to this tragic circumstance. We passed a law in your name here in
Nebraska, and then we created a nonprofit organization named after you, Project
Jason. We’ve helped find other missing people, including a son who was missing
for 14 years, and a sister missing for seven. We wish we could find you, but
rest assured son, we won’t stop trying.
We were blessed to have you with us for nineteen years. You taught us so
much, especially about generosity and kindness. You never told us these things,
but we found out from those who knew you. You took it upon yourself to help a
handicapped boy at school to get from class to class. You sang a rap in front of
the whole school to help your friend get elected to the student council, even
though you are shy and quiet. We saw for ourselves how you would literally run
to open the door for elderly people, or help someone across the street.
Because of these things and more, we know you would want us to do the work
we do to help other families of missing persons. In honor of your 27th birthday,
and we know you would approve, we are asking for donations to your name sake
organization. It’s been a struggle these past seven years without you, and also
in founding the organization and accomplishing what we know we could. With the
support of others who care, we will achieve more for these suffering families
and help to reunite them with their missing loved ones.
We’re going to ask, dear Jason, that each person reading this consider
donating $27 in your name to Project Jason. Realizing there are many who truly
can’t afford to do this, perhaps some who can, will donate an additional $27. We
have a goal to reach $2,700 by October 6th, which will be the 5th anniversary of
the founding of Project Jason.
For those who wish to help, they can mail their donation to Project Jason,
PO Box 3035, Omaha, NE 68103, OR go to our website,, and
click on the PayPal button at the bottom of the page. We’ll also show the
progress towards the October goal on the “birthday present” image shown on the
bottom of the main page of our website.
It will be wonderful to be able to affect even more families in your name,
Jason. The greatest gift of all would be to have you back in our lives, but if
that is not to be, we will continue on with our work with the help and support
of the kind people of the world, people just like you.
Love Always,
Mom, Dad, and Michael
Photo and age progression from Jason's NCMEC poster.

CUE Center's On the Road to Remember Tour 2008

Audrey Nerenberg, Cynthia Day, and Jason Jolkowski have been featured on this blog, so I am including their pictures.
I am curious to see who will be included from Pennsylvania if it is included.
The following is from a post to the Yahoo! ColdCases group. It explains all the details (which I would assume could be subject to change), including which missing persons will be featured.

We are currently trying to complete the following states; North Carolina
(eastern area) - Virginia - West Virginia for press/rally stops; we have got
some addresses in so far and need to complete this run very soon, if interested
please contact us, thank you.
Who can host a stop?
* Family of a missing person
* Law officials
* Organization/ group or volunteer
Who/What should be featured at the stop?
* Missing Persons
* Unidentified Persons
* Unsolved Homicide Cases
What are some ideas for a Rally Stop?
* Candle Light Vigils
* Balloon Launches
* Guest Speaker, Prayer, Performances, etc.
* Make it an event, invite other groups, etc.
* Have a center table with information, photos of those being featured,
button, displays, etc.
* Invite other families from your area that have suffered a crime or
missing person
* Invite your law officials and community leaders
* Signage, banners, marques and more
What type of locations have been used in the past?
* Police Departments, Mayor or other agencies
* Parking Lots of any kind of business
* Home of a family - if easy route from main roads
* Parks of any kind
* Local Churches
Their are many different locations to use call for more ideas
States Traveling Through In No Particular Order
North Carolina
West Virginia
New York
Rhode Island
New Jersey
New Hampshire
Pennsylvania (possible)
Case to be featured so far...
Jeremy Alex - Honoree Northport, Maine
Anthony Allen Fort Smith Arkansas
April Pitzer New Berry Springs, California
April Wiss Wichita, Kansas
Audrey Nerenberg Brooklyn, New York
Bethany & Tina Sinclair Chesterfield, New Hampshire
Bernadette Stevenson Caruso Baltimore, Maryland
Branson Perry Skidmore, Missouri
Cynthia Day East Saint Louis, Illinois
Deborah Lowe Pompano Beach, Florida
Delwin Locklear Maxton, North Carolina
Floyd Price Diamondhead, Mississippi
Frances `Franny" Graham Coker Creek, Illinois
Gilbert Paul Caravallo Pearl City, Hawaii
Heather Teague Spottsville, Kentucky
Jason Scott Adkins Huntington, West Virginia
Jason Jolkowski Omaha, Nebraska
Jerry Tang San Francisco, California
Jody Ledkins Kansas City, Missouri
Joe D´Aquisto SR. Ashville, North Carolina
Jon Shadden Robert Lee, Texas
Justin Gaines Duluth, Georgia
Kent Jacobs Hope Mills, NC
Kerry Johnson Salem, Oregon
Kynande Bennett Whiteville, North Carolina
Leah Roberts Durham, NC
Margaret Haddican McEnroe Somerset City, New Jersey
Mary Badaracco Sherman, Connecticut
Melanie Metheny Belle, West Virginia
Michael Austin Davis Jacksonville, Florida
Michael Hogan Shrewsbury, Vermont
Monica Carrasco Balmorhea, Texas
Patricia Viola Bogota, New Jersey
Tracey Gardner - Tetso Rosedale, Maryland
Troy Marks New Orleans, Louisiana 6/6/2006
Monica Caison
CUE Center for Missing Persons
PO Box 12714
Wilmington, NC 28405
(910) 343-1131
(910) 232-1687 24 Hour Line
Email: mailto:cuecenter@aol.
Website: _www.ncmissingperso ns.org_ (http://www.ncmissingpersons./)
Audrey Nerenberg's website:
Audrey's pictures from her Charley Project profile. Cynthia's pictures from her website. Jason's 2001 photo from his website and age progression from his NCMEC poster.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Arkadiy Tashman: Sister on "Missing Pieces" show; DNA test results pending

Transcript of episode from
TODD MATTHEWS (Missing Pieces Host): I’m Todd Matthews. This is
Missing Pieces, and tonight we have Natalya, and Natalya, I’m not even going to
attempt to say your last name. I’m going to let you pronounce it.
VOSKRESENSKAYA: (Guest, sister of missing Arkadiy): My last name is
TODD: Oh, wow, with my Southern accent, I would have
butchered that, terribly, so…and I don’t want to do that, it’s a beautiful name.
You are the sister of missing, ‘Ark’ Tashman?
TODD: Okay,
now what is his first name? How do you pronounce his first name?
Arkadiy (Ark-ah-dee).
TODD: Arkadiy. Okay. I’ve read a lot about him, you
know you have a friend, Paul Thompson, and he’s a member of our ‘Cold Cases’
group, and he has kept us very informed of your case. I’ve watched it for quite
a while, and I read a note where you said, ‘”Every time I post a flyer, I see
your face. I still look into tall, young guys’ faces, trying to spot you when I
walk on the street. Come back, I MISS YOU SO MUCH.” - Natalya’ – and that’s what
you said about your brother.
TODD: And he has been missing
since January 26, 2005, and he was 17 years old, from Staten Island, New York.
He’s nearly 6’2”, 170-180 pounds; light brown/ash blond hair, gray/blue eyes. He
had a pierced right ear and scars on both arms. What happened in this case?
NATALYA: I wish we knew what happened because, all of a sudden, he never
came home. He went to see his friends. He went to his friends’ house, and my Mum
woke up in the middle of the night realizing that he never came home.
Uh huh.
NATALYA: Unfortunately I was not in town at that time, so I was not
aware of this, and the next morning they called the police, and the police came
in and they found a note. They found a note on his desk. It was a bit of a
disturbing note that alluded to possible suicide that he might have committed,
but to be honest with you, we don’t really believe that he committed a suicide,
and usually when people commit suicide, and believe me, by now I’m an expert at
that, they don’t hide their bodies.
TODD: Not on their own, you know, that’s
sort of a very hard thing to do.
NATALYA: Absolutely, and we still have not
heard anything or…we had some possible sightings, which I personally checked out
each one of them, but then people would be convinced, “No, it’s not him,” after
I would come to the place with lots of pictures and I would speak to people that
suspected it might be my brother, but then they would assure me that it’s not
him after seeing a couple of different pictures. Unfortunately, we have not had
anything, but we are still going on.
TODD: So, you have this note that
alludes to suicide, though, do you think that there’s a possibility that he was
forced to write it? Or, that he didn’t write it? Or, that he wrote it to cover
up the fact that maybe he was just going to take off?
NATALYA: Ah, it was
definitely his writing. It was definitely his writing, but honestly, we’ve
been…and I’ve been talking to all of his friends, all of the people that
surrounded him, beside us, the family. Um, no, we don’t believe he was forced
into writing this and, yes, it did seem that he wrote it of his own will.
TODD: You know, I have a 16-year-old son, and I like to think that I know
him. I like to think that he’s happy and well-adjusted and having no problems,
you know, and of course you don’t want to think that, and my brother is younger
than myself and my son will talk to him sometimes, and it’s only through that
that I realize that he does have problems and concerns and worries, and I think
I know him well enough that I would know it, but I think I know him so well and
love him so much, that I don’t want to know it, that I don’t want to consider
the possibility that he has problems or confusions, but it’s a hard world to
grow up in as a teen right now.
NATALYA: Yeah, actually, and especially for
a teenager right now, it’s really hard. First of all, it’s really hard for them
to know who they are and it brings a lot of problems, when they don’t know who
they are, they start trying different things…
TODD: Uh huh.
…and they are afraid of the future.
TODD: And who can blame them, you know?
It is scary.
NATALYA: Yeah. No, I’ve been one. I’ve been a teenager.
TODD: We’ve been there.
NATALYA: Yeah, we’ve all been there, and I
remember, I was thinking, “Okay, so once I graduate from this school, okay, I go
to college, but who am I, what am I going to do? What’s going to happen to me?”
and all those choices that all of a sudden they have to make in their lives,
it’s scary, and I understand it but unfortunately, I think, sometimes people
close to teenagers, we might just overlook…
TODD: Uh huh.
NATALYA: …some
of their challenges.
TODD: I was lucky and unlucky all at the same time. You
know I planned on college growing up, and I thought, you know, it was scary
because you really didn’t know which direction to go in, and then the girl that
I ended up marrying, she was a year younger than me, her home burned and her
family was going to move away, so I had to hurry up and we had to move forward,
so college changed, we got married and began life. So, I think we jumped into it
so quickly, that I didn’t have time to think or worry, and then we just had to
get busy with life, and for me, it worked out really good. I’m happy, and I
wouldn’t change a thing. I wouldn’t go back and change a thing; I’ve been
married 20 years, this year, so it’s a very good thing for me, but you know, in
this world today, 20 years later, I would hate to think that my son would even
try to take that route.
NATALYA: Yes, I understand what you’re saying. I
actually can relate to the situation because I got married very early, in
college, and I have not regretted this, and we’ve been married for quite a long
time and we have two beautiful kids, but unfortunately, I think the world has
changed so much since 20 years ago…
TODD: Oh, yes.
NATALYA: …and kids
have much more options, but I think they’re afraid of this world, and I believe
that right values in life are not being taught in school.
TODD: And I get to
talk to kids Ark’s age all the time, you know, that’s the main group that I
target if I go do the high school lectures, we talk about career development,
and it’s this age, and it is such a confusing age. You know, had your brother
expressed some confusion to you guys, or was this…?
NATALYA: Yes, actually,
yeah. And I always remember that when I learned that he was missing, you know
you start going back, you start scrutinizing every moment that you had with the
person, and before he went missing, I would say three months before he went
missing, for a month, most evenings he just was sitting on the balcony, it’s a
beautiful evening, we’re talking, and all of a sudden he said, “Natalya, to be
honest with you, I don’t see myself living after I’m 18 years old.” And I looked
at him, and I think later I realized, I dismissed that saying too quickly, but I
looked at him and I said, “Arkadiy, what are you talking about?” and he said,
“Natalya, what am I going to do?” And, you know, he is an extremely bright
person, extremely bright, and very smart and very humorous, but he had been
having troubles with his school, not because he was educationally challenged,
no, just because he had been missing some classes and he was hanging out with
friends, so he was left in ninth grade for the second time, and then he just…I
don’t think he realized he knew that he can change everything in his life.
TODD: Uh huh.
NATALYA: He was afraid of his life, even though he was an
extremely brave person, and I just said that he ‘was’…and I still believe that
he ‘is.’
TODD: He was at a very scary point in his life, you know, jumping
into the adult world from school, you know jobs are so hard to find, there are
just so many challenges out there now, so I can imagine somebody being afraid.
NATALYA: Yeah, and I also think they’re afraid of not standing up to our
TODD: Uh huh.
NATALYA: I’m afraid that they think they might
disappoint us with some of the choices. Honestly, I think all I could have…if I
could do something differently…
TODD: Uh huh.
NATALYA: …I would just
have maybe half an hour conversation with him and tell him that it doesn’t
matter what he does in life; it doesn’t matter. I know who he is and I love the
guy that he is. It doesn’t matter if he might not have a career or if he would
work at McDonald’s, it doesn’t matter. It doesn’t matter as long as, you know, I
loved him, I love him very dearly; I don’t think, kids at that age, they know
how much we love them.
TODD: No, they really don’t, and you know there are
times when I’m harsh with my son because I’m trying to push him in a direction
and you have to keep telling him the same things over and over, and you have to
get really firm with them, and then I feel guilty, then I think, “I can’t feel
guilty because I must make him succeed. I must make sure he’s okay if I’m not
TODD: And I know that’s probably confusing to him,
you know, and (sighs) just the troubles of being a teenager.
TODD: Now, you, like me, you have a very distinct accent. I’ve got a
Southern accent and you’re Russian, I do believe, right?
NATALYA: Yes, I am
TODD: Were you born in Russia?
NATALYA: I was born in Russia. I
went to college in Russia and I moved here 11 years ago.
TODD: Now, your
brother, was he born there, or here?
NATALYA: He was born in Russia. When we
came here, he was 8 years old, and it was very challenging for him, especially
the first year was really hard, he went to school and he never spoke English,
and you know, just the whole fitting in procedure, it was really hard.
Do you think that created a whole set of unique challenges for him?
Yes, and also he saw our parents were struggling. They dropped all their lives
in Russia and they came here and everything was just starting over again, and
it’s pretty hard to do, you know, when you certainly got used to certain
lifestyles. But, to be honest with you, I think he got assimilated into the
American world fairly quickly.
TODD: Uh huh. Well, you are in New York and
it’s quite a melting pot there.
NATALYA: Yeah, you’re absolutely right.
TODD: I went there; I was there recently in New York, earlier this month in
fact, and it was hard to find an American in some places there. Most of the
people were…because I talked to a few people and I knew by their accents, they
weren’t from here.
TODD: So, he wasn’t alone. He wasn’t
like an isolated person, like he might be here. Here, in my area, most all these
people are born, and they’ve been here for…their families have been here for
generations, so he might feel more foreign here, but New York, definitely
somebody from a foreign land can blend in rather easily.
absolutely, and especially his English…his Russian was degrading because he was
only using it at home…
TODD: Uh huh.
NATALYA: …and English pretty much
became his first language.
TODD: Hmm. So, now tell me about the parents?
NATALYA: My parents…I’m half-sister to Arkadiy…
TODD: Uh huh.
NATALYA: …so there is no confusion, but it doesn’t matter, when he was born,
I was much older than he was and he was pretty much my first child. So, our
mother, she’s in a wheelchair, and she’s been in a wheelchair since she was 2
years old, and his father, I call him father, I started calling him father when
I was 6 years old, so I consider him my father as well, even though he’s not my
biological father.
TODD: So, now obviously, this is very difficult for them,
and that would be a stupid question to ask if it’s a difficult process for them,
but you know, they’re from a foreign country as well, you know, how are they
coping with this?
TODD: Because you seem to be the
spokesperson, from everything I’ve read or seen, you…
TODD: …seem to be the person taking the lead in what’s happening.
NATALYA: It destroyed them, to be honest with you. It completely destroyed
them because it’s not like there have been some precedents to Arkadiy’s
disappearance, no, he never ran away from home, and he didn’t have a fight with
parents, no, everything was just another regular day. It destroyed them because
they don’t know why, and how could that happen? And, of course, everyone is
blaming themselves. My Mum is blaming herself that she did not do something to
prevent it, and my Dad is blaming himself and it’s just…
TODD: Well, it’s
easy to look back and do that, you know, you have to think, “What did I do
wrong? What could I have done? How could I have loved them more? How could I
have prevented this?” You know, that’s all the normal things that somebody goes
through in this situation, obviously.
NATALYA: Yes, and other times, they’re
trying to understand; maybe they…maybe at some point they were too hard on him,
maybe…it’s all ‘maybe, maybe, maybe, maybe, maybe’…maybe there is something we
could have done differently and he would be still here with us. There’s this
part in this that, while we still believe he’s alive, we can get mad at him…all
of a sudden, in the hardest moments, all of a sudden, and my Mum does the same,
we’re like, “How could he do that do us? Doesn’t he love us?” and, you know,
this act of selfishness, those words of selfishness…
TODD: Uh huh.
NATALYA: …they kind of make us feel better, but it’s just a self-deception,
to be honest with you.
TODD: But he was an avid skateboarder, from what I’m
reading, and it seems like law enforcement are kind of looking in these
communities; maybe he’s found some refuge there.
NATALYA: I was hoping…when
he went missing, we actually, we pooled a lot of people to help us look for him,
and believe me, I’ve been used to life in New York and everything seemed normal
there, but when we started researching and walking through some of the shelters,
through some of the troublesome areas of New York, we discovered a whole
underground world…
TODD: Uh huh.
NATALYA: …and it was scary. It was
scary. And we met some people who would say, “Oh, yeah, I had a whole bunch of
teenagers and sometimes they stayed with me for a couple of days and then they
move on,” and there is a possibility, and I’m hoping that that’s what happened,
that that’s what’s happening right now.
TODD: I mean, I can see a kid that
age take off and then maybe have a change of heart in a short period of time,
but a lot can happen to somebody in a very short period of time. So, you think
it’s possible, maybe he did decide to just take an adventure and then maybe
simply get caught up in something that kept him from coming back?
I’m praying that that’s what happened. I am praying, and do you know what would
make it much easier for me? If I knew that he had his green card or passport
with him.
TODD: But now, recently, you’ve done something with DNA.
NATALYA: Yes, and it happened just last week, finally, I do think, and I’m
not trying to blame anyone, but I do think that the way this process is going,
is wrong on many levels because they’ve been keeping me in suspense for months
after they requested the DNA to be formed. But, we mailed our DNA; I actually
took…performed three tests on me and my mother and my father, and we mailed it
back to the crime lab.
TODD: Uh huh.
NATALYA: I do know for sure that
they have a body that they suspect is my dear Arkadiy, even though they’re not
telling that to me, but I’m pretty much aware of how this process has been run,
so now we’re just waiting. The hardest part, of course, was to convince my
parents that this was just a routine thing, they do it after three years, and
I’m doing everything I can to shield them from all the pain because I know how
it is.
Every time you start hoping, maybe you’ll find him there and when you
realize that he’s not there, and it’s like you’re losing him all…
over again.
NATALYA: …all over again, and we’ve been through this ‘all over
again’ so many times, and I’m trying to shield them as much as possible from
TODD: So now, you’re actually preparing yourself for the possibility
that this could be your brother?
NATALYA: Yeah, but I’ve been preparing
myself for so long so it’s…
TODD: Just usual business of the day; you’ve had
three years to be preparing yourself for this.
NATALYA: Yeah. Unfortunately,
it’s never…I’m afraid this will never be usual, but this is just one of those
many times when you cry…it’s a rollercoaster, then all of a sudden you’re on top
of your hopes, “No, there is no way something is going to happen,” and you fly
back down again.
TODD: Uh huh.
NATALYA: But, I believe…I love life…
TODD: Uh huh.
NATALYA: …and it’s hard for me to believe that my brother
did not love life the way I did, and I know he did love his life as well, but
I’m just hoping that he’s not one of those unidentified bodies.
TODD: Do you
think, like you said you have a love of life and you hope he did as well, maybe
it wasn’t a choice, is it possible maybe he had a degree of depression? Maybe he
needed to be on some type of medication, and it happens a lot, with people
having to cope with society, you know sometimes you can’t.
Unfortunately, maybe because I never believed in depression…
TODD: Uh huh.
NATALYA: …that something like that exists. Once I was given an explanation
about what depression is, it’s like you wake up in the morning and you don’t
want to go to work, then I said, “Oh, aha, that I’m having.” But if he had any
type of depression, I’m afraid that if it’s true, I failed to recognize it.
TODD: I mean, we all go through depression, you know, periods of depression,
who doesn’t? You know sometimes you wake up, “This is a bad day and I don’t know
how I’m going to fix things.” You know, I worry about my son who’s getting older
and he’s going to leave home and you can get depressed real easy, but it’s when
you stay depressed.
NATALYA: Yeah. I think, yeah, unless it’s really
something like a chemical imbalance, I wish people can always do something about
something about depression, just force yourself to keep going forward…
NATALYA: …and that’s the best cure, unless it’s really something,
because depression is more of a mental state, but as long as you don’t give in
to it.
TODD: In this situation that you’re in, is that what you’re doing,
forcing yourself forward? Is that how you are able to go forward? I mean, this
is, honestly, I wouldn’t want to trade places with you. I wouldn’t want to have
to go through what you guys are going through personally, and I don’t know how I
would deal with it.
NATALYA: If you…I would actually say exactly the same if
you were talking before Arkadiy disappeared, but it was extremely hard to suffer
for the first three months, it was extremely hard because all I could
concentrate on was searching for Arkadiy. I was getting probably four hours of
sleep a day, I was lucky if I was getting that, but otherwise I called that
wasting precious time.
TODD: Uh huh.
NATALYA: I thought, “If I find him,
everything is going to be…everything will be magically fixed.” Everything, even
in my life, I thought everything would be magically fixed, but then when three
months went by and he was still…he still had not been heard from, I tried
different things. I tried diving into work. I tried everything, but what helped
me a lot was that, finally, the following summer after his disappearance, my
husband and I, we bought a house and we moved my parents in…
TODD: Uh huh.
NATALYA: …and now, it kind of gives the feeling that we’re more full of a
family. We’re a very, I think, we’re a very good family, and I also gave birth
to my second son; I was pregnant when Arkadiy disappeared.
TODD: And that
helps, having a busy family when you’re actually trying to tend to others’ needs
and you’ve got a baby that’s very demanding, I’m sure, no doubt about it.
NATALYA: And it keeps my parents from falling apart, to be honest with you.
They are babysitters during the day when my husband and I are working; they are
babysitters and it really keeps their minds partially off of the tragedy, but
it’s always like a shadow in a corner…
TODD: Uh huh.
NATALYA: …that
Arkadiy huge shadow, which sometimes we try to pretend, especially when we are
together, you know, we don’t want to bring each other down, otherwise my Mum can
break down and if she breaks down, I go right after that.
TODD: Do you find
yourself trying to avoid talking about it?
NATALYA: Not avoiding, but…yeah,
you can say it, avoiding, but still, or if we talk about it then it’s joyful;
something like, “Oh Mum, can you imagine, maybe he’s somewhere? What if he has a
child by now?”
TODD: Uh huh.
NATALYA: (Sighs) Wishful thinking.
TODD: Well, do you think it’s possible that he might have gone back to
NATALYA: His Russian was not so good. I think he would feel much
more of a stranger in Russia than here but, again, I’m not dismissing anything.
I did not even dismiss a chance that he might be in Bolivia with some global
TODD: Yeah, well, you’ve got to hang onto anything, anything that
you have that’s a hope, you know, you’ve got to hang onto it.
even if people are scammers and all they are trying is to get money out of you.
By the way, here is one advice, do not believe and never, never, ever…God forbid
something like that happens, someone who is claiming something in exchange for
money, no. Check it out, do not dismiss it, check it out, I almost had to
believe it, but apparently it was a scam.
TODD: So, what’s next now? You’re
waiting for the DNA, and obviously you’ve got to wait that out.
TODD: Um, where from there? If this is not him, what happens next?
NATALYA: I will do my best to get our DNA profiles into the National DNA
Database so that any other remains that were found across the country, can be
compared against ours. And, what’s next? The same, next. I will take one of
those overnight works to prevent teenage suicide and I’ll continue getting the
word out; printing more business-card-sized posters, and just giving them out.
There are many people, good people, that are willing to help, and there are many
people that are not ignorant to someone else’s tragedy, so everything is going
to go the same. We’ll be hoping, waiting, searching…it’s just never stopping,
never stopping, and it’s a part of my life now. I don’t even know how to live
any differently, to be honest with you.
TODD: It’s amazing what somebody can
get used to.
NATALYA: Yeah. Yeah, it is, but it just…it’s part of life now.
TODD: Well, for the next part of the show, we’re going to interview Paul
Thompson, and I think he’s been a good support system for you guys. He’s
certainly let a lot of people know about you. That’s where I came to know about
you. He’s a good cheerleader for you.
NATALYA: Oh, he’s much more than a
cheerleader. He contacted us, maybe two weeks after my brother’s disappearance,
because he contacted us because he saw a flyer, one of the flyers we had been
posting in our never-ending search for Arkadiy, and he got in touch with another
family that had a missing teenager, so we kind of could compare our notes.
TODD: Uh huh.
NATALYA: “Did you report the missing child there?” “Yes, I
did.” “Oh, by the way, I did it there, did you do it?” and, you know, how better
to put posters, where, how to print it, how to get the word out, and people to
connect to, local government and everything. So, he’s been…he even went to the
extreme, when we thought that Arkadiy might have committed suicide, so we were
going through local park areas, searching through woods, pretty much, he was the
one who was walking with us.
TODD: Now, what did you think about a stranger?
Now, you know he’s a nice guy now, but then, when you heard from just somebody
out of the blue, how was that?
NATALYA: Can you please repeat your question?
TODD: You know you just heard from this guy, Paul, and now you know he’s a
really great guy, but you know, you just got a phone call from him, and was that
NATALYA: No, it wasn’t strange because for those first two weeks
that I was looking for Arkadiy, I received, maybe two or three calls of support,
the rest were pranks, and all of a sudden, getting someone normal on the phone,
and my phone bill was skyrocketing…$1,000 every month because TV, newspapers,
radio stations, they were giving out my cell phone number, that’s how I was
asking them to do because I did not believe that police would not overlook
something, you know, I’m really used to relying on myself. And all of a sudden,
and I’d been getting so many prank calls and so many really nasty calls, and it
was really good for a change, to get a call from someone normal. I even had
calls, people would try to lure me into some places, it just was horrible, but I
have good, tough skin, and thank God.
TODD: Now, why do you think that
somebody would do that? Actually be so cruel as to call you and do that, why?
NATALYA: One reason I can tell you, and that’s probably the only phone call
that I answered, some of the guys gave me a call and they said, “Oh, if I was
your…” they thought he was my son because I was looking for him, but they were
saying horrible things, but one of them said, “If I was your son, I would have
killed myself,” and the only thing I could reply was, “You wish you were my son
because what you are doing right now just tells me that you’re afraid that if
you disappear, no one is going to be looking for you, that’s what you are afraid
of. And you’re jealous of Arkadiy because someone, there is a family that loves
him so much, they don’t care, they will go through everything in search for
TODD: Whatever it takes, right?
NATALYA: Whatever it takes,
seriously. And we hired private investigator, and believe me, I don’t think
there is anything we have not done.
TODD: Oh, my.
NATALYA: But Paul was
the very first honest person who is not looking to gain anything from our
tragedy, and who has a really big heart, and is doing everything he can to help
TODD: That he is. That he is. I see a lot of evidence of things that you
might not even know about that he tries to do. He always takes the time to tell
TODD: He just never told me how to pronounce
your last name.
NATALYA: I don’t think he can too.
TODD: I don’t think
he can either.
NATALYA: But it actually has a really good meaning in
Russian, it means sunny. Yeah, I know, sunny should be something short, but I
guess we never make it too easy for people.
TODD: Well, it’s been really
good talking to you. I’m going to get the second half of this from Paul, and get
some feedback from him, and we’ll say goodbye to everybody and then you and I
will talk just for a few more minutes. I’ve got a couple of things I want to ask
in private, but we’ll say goodnight to the audience and I’ll be right back with
Paul. Goodnight everybody.
NATALYA: Goodnight.
This concludes the first
part of this episode of Missing Pieces.
Please stay tuned for Part 2 -
Interview with Paul Thompson with the 'Cold Cases' group.
(Missing Pieces Host): And joining us for the second half is a friend of mine,
Paul Thompson. Welcome Paul.
PAUL THOMPSON: (Guest): Hi Todd.
are you doing?
PAUL: I’m doing fine.
TODD: Okay. I just did the first
part for the interview; I just finished with Natalya. I can’t pronounce her last
name and I don’t think you can either, but she did for us, Arkadiy’s sister.
PAUL: From what I understand, it’s Voskresenskaya.
TODD: Oh wow, it was
a long name, but no matter, we’ll spell it out right on the show, but lovely
lady, and I love her accent. We talked about you a little bit in that episode.
You know, she said that you were one of the first normal people that contacted
her; she’s gotten a lot of rough phone calls at first when her cell phone number
was posted and she’s really happy with you. She had a lot of nice comments about
you. And I know it’s scary and I said, “Was it scary hearing from somebody?” I
said, “He’s a stranger just reaching out from the blue,” and she said that she
was very open to it because you were one of the first normal people that really
tried to care and you walked beside of them often. Now, what made you pick up
that phone and call this family?
PAUL: Well, at the time, I was involved
with searching…helping another family, who live about two blocks away from my
home, search for their 14-year-old daughter, back in the beginning of 2005, in
January, and this is when he disappeared, when Arkadiy disappeared, and after a
few weeks, about four weeks after he disappeared, the mother of the young girl
who we were searching for, came across one of Arkadiy’s flyers on a supermarket
window, about a half a mile or so from where I live. She responded, I guess, and
called her up or…I don’t remember exactly how the initial contact happened, but
she told me about the flyer, and then she asked me, since I was doing so much to
help them, could I possibly do whatever I can to help Natalya and her family by
making contact with them too. I don’t remember if I actually called her, or what
exactly happened, but I think that the contact was through the girl’s mother,
then we met up later on at her house, which is, again, two blocks from where I
live. So, the initial contact between me and Natalya, from what I remember, came
when I met her at the young girl’s house with the mother, who I was assisting at
the time. And ever since then, it’s been like almost nonstop, we try to help in
whatever way we can. It’s not only me helping Natalya, there are quite a few
other people, like on the side and in the background, that I don’t even think
that Natalya has even talked to, but she has met a good friend, Carlos, who has
been quite active over the past two years helping me, and she met a few other
people that help me also.
TODD: Well, she’s a really nice lady. I think
they’ve done a lot to try to find him and there are a few things that I think I
might be able to help her with. I’ve got a couple of resources for a couple of
things that she is trying to achieve and I think I’ll be able to help her with
it. We talked privately for a little while before we connected up with you and
hopefully I’m going to draft you to help me with that…some of those things, so
I’ll definitely be talking to you more after we get done with the interview.
They’ve got a lot of things they can do yet, you know. So, they got a lot done,
but there are still quite a few things more that they can do, and I think she
wants to move forward and try anything.
PAUL: That’s right. Exactly.
Especially since, up to this point, it’s been rough not having even the
slightest bit of answers that she’s actually looking for.
TODD: Uh huh. It
must be tough, you know, coming here from a foreign country, for her parents,
and then this happening. You know, they’ve been here for quite a while but,
still, you know, can you imagine? I just can’t imagine what they’re going
through, but we’ll keep trying. You know, Paul is a long-time member of ‘Cold
Cases,’ I’ve known you for quite a while, and that’s how I actually heard of
this case, as a matter of fact, was through you, so you definitely have done a
lot to try to help this family, and I hope you will continue to do. In fact, I
know you will, I’ve no doubt about that.
PAUL: I’ve already made it clear
with everybody who is involved with helping me help them, that I’m going to be
right by Natalya’s side in her search for her brother for as long as it takes to
find out what happened, regardless of what the results are and regardless of how
long it takes, I’m going to be here until they get their answer, for sure.
TODD: And I think she’s prepared either way for this, you know, which ever
way this DNA test goes, I think, you know, like she said, “I’ve had three years
to prepare myself.” You know, I don’t know how soon the results are going to
come back, but we’re definitely going to have her back or, worse case scenario,
we probably would ask you to come back and help update our listeners as to
what’s happened and I’m hoping that she’s going to get good news between now and
then, obviously, so all we can do is keep looking, and you know we will.
PAUL: Definitely. And of course we can’t forget about all the other people
on ‘Cold Cases,’ there are some, besides myself that get involved in the overall
searching as well, I mean, just my being a ‘Cold Cases’ member, doesn’t mean
that I’m the only one on ‘Cold Cases’ that cares.
TODD: I mean, we have a
lot of good people, we have a mix, and I’m honest, we have a lot of people
because it’s a public message board and sometimes it’s difficult with some of
the things that we encounter there because there are people there sometimes that
are negative, and it’s hard to deal with it, but it’s the reality. You know,
just like Natalya got prank phone calls at first, it happens, and if you’re
going to deal with the public, it’s going to happen, and I think we’ve dealt
with these things in stride and we’re able to still move forward and find good
people, and usually if I ask somebody to help me do something on ‘Cold Cases,’ I
usually send them private notes so that we can do it without somebody
interfering, and we’ve managed to do that quite well, I think. We often have to
do that.
PAUL: Most of the time, or just about all the time, when that
happens, it’s definitely for the better, because there are some things that you
just can’t talk about and some things you can.
TODD: But it’s a good gauge
to public reaction. You know, if we see how people are going to react in ‘Cold
Cases’ and other public boards, you’ve got some idea of what to expect when you
into a national media, what you’re going to hear from the public, so I think it
helps prepare us. I’ve certainly learned a lot. I take a lot of things in
stride. I’ve seen a lot of people get upset with ‘Cold Cases’ at times because
they’re not really expecting some of the feedback, but I guess I’ve gotten used
to it over the years and sometimes it can get quite interesting, but I’m still
encouraged and I know it’s going to work out.
PAUL: I know we’ve seen our
share of interesting ‘happenings.’
TODD: Yes, we have. We have, you know,
and I’ve got people that would like nothing better than to do away with me, I
think, at times, and I don’t even know why; I don’t bother anybody. You know, I
don’t think I bother anybody, but it seems like some people just want to take
you down, no matter what. I don’t know why, but I think we’re trying to help
people and I know you are.
PAUL: Well, it’s like that in the real world too.
TODD: Yeah. I mean, it’s a slice of reality and that’s why I always think
that if we can’t handle it in ‘Cold Cases,’ we certainly are not going to handle
it in the real world very well.
PAUL: Exactly.
TODD: So, well, Paul, it
was good to have you here. We’ll have this out to the public and I’m counting on
you to help circulate it.
PAUL: Definitely.
TODD: All right. We’ll talk
to you soon. I’ll see you in ‘Cold Cases.’
PAUL: I’ll be here to the end,
whatever that end may be, you know.
TODD: Uh huh. We will try. All right,
we’ll say goodnight to everybody and I’ll be in touch with you a little later.
PAUL: Yes, definitely. Have a good night.
TODD: All right. Goodnight
PAUL: Thank you for having me, and of course, Natalya as well.
Arkadiy Tashman's Vitals:
Date of Birth: October 12, 1987
Date Missing: January 26, 2005
Age at Time of Disappearance: 17 years old
Missing From: Staten Island, NY
Height: 6' 0" to 6' 2"
Weight: 170 to 180 lbs.
Hair Color: Light Brown to Ash Blond
Eye Color: Light Gray/Blue
Piercings: Right ear
Scars/Marks: Scars on both arms
Clothing: Green baseball cap, light gray sweatshirt or sweat jacket, blue
jeans, black shoes.
Jewelry: Hoop earring.
If you have any information on Arkadiy's disappearance, please call the New York City Police Department at (212) 694-7781 or the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children at 1-800-THE-LOST (1-800-843-5678).
Please also visit Natalya's blog for Arkadiy at and the MySpace page for Arkadiy at