Saturday, July 19, 2014

Daughter Missing!

One Sunday, a new lady began to attend our church in the Gloversville YMCA. Emily became a member and brought many extended family members with her. What an encouragement she was to us even though she had a heart-rending story to tell.

On January 6, 1973, she and her husband Jim had put their 20-year-old daughter Pam and her dog, a malamute husky named Layla, on a plane in New York bound for California, where she planned to make her home. That was the last time they saw her. Three weeks later she disappeared without a trace!

Six months earlier, Pam and a girlfriend had gone to California to try their wings away from home. Deciding to make her home there, Pam returned to Gloversville for Christmas to get the rest of her things.

Pam was always industrious and responsible. After high school she worked as a legal secretary, bought her own car, and paid her parents for her room and board. According to her boyfriend and other friends, she was never involved in the drug scene. She enjoyed cooking. needlework, and other homemaking activities. During her stay in California, Pam called home every evening--until the weekend she disappeared.

The first inkling of trouble was an urgent phone call from Pam's girlfriend Sally in Malibu on Monday night. "Have you heard from Pam?" she asked. Pam had called her Friday after work saying she was coming to spend the weekend, Sally told Emily. But Pam never arrived.

On Sunday, Sally drove over to Pam's apartment in Santa Monica. Finding no one there, she obtained the key from Pam's landlady and found the apartment in order. Only Pam and her dog, who accompanied her everywhere, were missing.

When Pam failed to show up by Monday, Sally contacted the police and called Pam's parents. Emily immediately called her sister who lived in the Los Angeles area and asked her to check into the situation. When she could find no satisfactory answers, she recommended that Jim and Emily fly out to investigate for themselves.

The Spencers spent 16 days in the Los Angeles area. They talked to police, but they could find no clues. Even Pam's boyfriend, who was visiting his family in Colorado at the time of Pam's disappearance, was as clueless as they were as to her whereabouts.

The Spencers searched hospitals, institutions, dog pounds, and even appeared on television, showing Pam's picture and asking for information. Finally, in desperation, they hired a private investigator. After 10 days, he too was unable to turn up any clues.

With breaking hearts, they finally had to pack up Pam's things and return home to their two younger daughters. Then the torture of waiting and wondering began.

To be continued...

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