DNA May Crack 1984 Cold Case: Colleen Orsborn

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Normal DNA May Crack 1984 Cold Case: Colleen Orsborn

Post by lisette on Wed Feb 02, 2011 9:10 pm

ME Thinks Remains Are Likely Missing Daytona Girl
POSTED: 5:12 pm EST February 2, 2011
UPDATED: 6:34 pm EST February 2, 2011
ORLANDO, Fla. -- Authorities think they may have made a huge break in the case of a woman who's been missing for more than 20 years.
Colleen Orsborn of Daytona Beach hasn't been seen since 1984, when she was 15.
The break in the case came when Orange County Medical Examiner Dr. Jan Garavaglia was revisiting old cases of unidentified bodies and may have answers on what happened to Orsborn.
Investigators long believed Orsborn was murdered by Christopher Wilder, a serial killer who was in Daytona Beach on the same day in 1984 that Orsborn disappeared, but they never found her body. About a month later, Wilder was killed in a shootout with police in New Hampshire.
Around the time Wilder was killed, the body of a teenage girl was found in the Orlando area but the medical examiner at the time ruled out the possibility that it could be Orsborn...
But Dr. G, as she is known, has been reviewing her agency's cases of unidentified bodies and she said DNA tests on the remains of the unidentified girl found in 1984 match the mitochondrial DNA of one of Orsborn's sisters...



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Normal Re: DNA May Crack 1984 Cold Case: Colleen Orsborn

Post by lisette on Mon Aug 27, 2012 11:02 am

Relatives of slain Daytona teen say death sent shockwave through family
BY LYDA LONGA AND CHRIS GRAHAM, STAFF WRITERS
April 12, 2012

DAYTONA BEACH -- When a 15-year-old girl vanishes into thin air, it changes the way other children in her family are raised.

Just ask 21-year-old Alisha Carroll, whose aunt Colleen Orsborn disappeared 28 years ago after she missed her school bus and decided to go to the beach instead.

Colleen was never seen by her siblings again after she left her home the morning of March 15, 1984, and the experience left her entire family reeling.

Wednesday morning after almost three decades, Colleen's family was finally able to give the teenager a memorial service at the Basilica of St. Paul on North Ridgewood Avenue. Tuesday night, the family also held a candlelight vigil behind the Ocean Walk Shoppes at the clock tower on the Boardwalk.

The teen's brothers and sisters -- Colleen was the youngest of 10 children -- were present for the traditional 9 a.m. Mass; so was her niece Alisha Carroll and the twin nephews Colleen never got to meet.

The relatives talked about Colleen in the church lobby after the service -- sometimes crying, but mostly smiling -- saying the "baby of the family" was a comedian who at the age of 5 announced she was going to college as she held an encyclopedia Britannica in her hands.

But the conversations grew somewhat serious when Colleen's sister Margaret Carroll talked about raising her own children.

"It changes how you raise them," said Margaret Carroll, a clerk for the Sheriffs Office who lives in Volusia County and has four children. "The world is a bad place."

Her brother-in-law Tim Vail agreed: "Our children know bad things don't just happen to other people."

Alisha Carroll was 10 years old when she started to hear stories about her missing aunt.

But she got a taste of how much her family had actually suffered, when she herself went missing for a few hours in 2001 at the age of 15.

"I missed my bus home and I started walking around," she said. "I finally went to a gas station and called my mom and asked her to pick me up."

Margaret Carroll was frantic because she thought her daughter -- like Colleen -- was gone forever.

The scare prompted Margaret Carroll to show her daughter a letter that the family had received from an inmate at a New Hampshire prison.

"It was someone saying that he had killed Colleen and that he knew where her body was," Margaret Carroll said. "It was not true."

When Margaret Carroll and Alisha Carroll arrived at their home that day, Margaret Carroll broke down, telling her daughter the entire story of the stranger's letter and how scared she was for her daughter.

"She thought something had happened to me," Alisha Carroll said. "I'm not very good about calling sometimes, but I try to let her know where I am."

The young woman said she wished she had known her aunt: "I think she would have been my favorite aunt."

Colleen's remains were found in an Orange County lake a few days after she went missing. But it would be another 26 years before she was identified.

In 2010, Orange County Medical Examiner Dr. Jan Garavaglia was able to identify Colleen's remains after she took DNA samples from Colleen's sisters.

The match came in March 2010, six years after Garavaglia sent DNA from all the agency's unidentified bodies to a national database. A mitochondrial DNA sample -- the type inherited from the maternal side -- matched samples taken from two of Colleen's sisters.

But her relatives are not the only people who changed the way they lived after learning of Colleen's disappearance.

Tuesday evening at the candlelight vigil on the beach -- the candles were blown out by a strong wind -- two of Colleen's childhood friends talked about the void left in their lives after she left.

Donna Ward, 44, said the disappearance was a "wakeup call for everybody." She has made a living training dogs so they can be used in law enforcement.

Friend Marsha Evans, 42, said she put her children through martial arts training so they could better defend themselves against would-be attackers.

Police believe Coleen was one of the first victims of serial kill­er Christopher Wilder. She dis­appeared the same day Wilder, a 39-year-old Australian million­aire who raced in the 24 Hours of Daytona, checked into a Howard Johnson hotel in Daytona Beach. He killed himself weeks later during a skirmish with state troopers in New Hamp­shire.

Ward said she wishes she could look Colleen's killer in the eyes and speak her mind.

"I would tell him what kind of person he took from us," she said. "I'm 44 years old and she should be standing next to me."

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Normal Re: DNA May Crack 1984 Cold Case: Colleen Orsborn

Post by Guest on Mon Aug 27, 2012 11:52 am

cryingagain So sad. I am glad they found her.
"It changes how you raise them," said Margaret Carroll, a clerk for the Sheriffs Office who lives in Volusia County and has four children. "The world is a bad place."
I agree. We can't even let our kids play in their own yard or sleep in their own bed and be safe anymore.
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