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For parents, there is no greater love in the world than the love they have for their children. It is a parent’s worst nightmare to have his or her child go missing. Some are found alive, some found dead and some are just never found.
This is the case for the innocent children that have gone missing where no evidence on them was ever found. A few of these tragic missing children cases include that of Eloise Worledge, Ben Needham, Walter Collins and Natalie Holloway. For these childrens’ parents, the one thing they cling to is hope, hope and a form of closure that has yet to be found.
There is one case in particular that has recently been re-opened and is receiving national and international attention: The case of Etan Patz, who has been missing for over three decades now. Patz was last seen on May 25, 1979 walking to school and is famously known for being the first missing child to have his photograph placed on a milk carton, with the hope that someone in America would find him. To this day, he has yet to be found.
After the case has been closed for years, it was re-opened a little over five years ago when the head detective on the case, Michael Ferrandino, was promoted to a different position with the FBI. The case was reassigned to a junior agent, Thomas MacDonald. Ferrandino’s advice to the junior agent: “see what you can do with it.” And that is exactly what Agent MacDonald has been doing the past five years.
MacDonald gathered evidence of the 3 decade case and decided to document everything he had researched from scratch. He went back to the day Etan Patz went missing and created a 50 page document of the case he refers to as the “Patzifesto.” After getting nowhere over the years with the prime suspect since the 1980’s, Jose Ramos, MacDonald decided he should look beyond Ramos and consider other suspects. While Ramos has claimed over the years that he was with Etan the day he went missing, he claims that he did not abduct or kill him.
Instead, MacDonald turned his attention toward a neighborhood handyman, Othniel Miller. After thorough research, the agent felt that Miller had “something to answer to,” and was not telling investigators as much as he really knew. After FBI Agents found out that Miller, who is now 75, had raped a young girl when he was much younger, they immediately started interviewing him.
“During one interview, agents watched Mr. Miller as he grew aroused while he looked through a book of images of children. At another point during questioning, when agents asked Mr. Miller about the possibility of Etan’s body being buried in the basement, he asked back, “What if the body was moved?”
About a month ago, after Miller’s suspicious statement, FBI agents brought in a cadaver dog down into the basement of Miller’s former workshop. From the dog’s response in the basement, it showed the FBI that human remains might be there. The digging for the body started over two weeks ago and yet, there is nothing that has been found. One law enforcement individual said, “if they find remains, the case is solvable, if none are found, I feel we’re at a dead end.”
For the sake of Etan’s family including parents Stanley and Julie Patz and sister Shira, only one can hope that something is found. After over 30 years of grieving over Etan’s disappearance, at the very least, this family deserves some form of closure as well as the families of Eloise Worledge, Ben Needham, Walter Collins, Natalie Holloway and all of the other families out there who are missing their beloved children.