I would like to thank everyone for your posts, emails, and comments via Facebook in support of the family as we continue this journey. We are ever grateful by the constant and overwhelming support of our friends, family, and community. While the Sheriff’s Department continues the search for Heidi’s original dental records, we trust and wait. This of course has become a necessary characteristic for survival.
Heidi disappeared nearly eighteen years ago and up until this week I never felt like my beloved missing sister would be forgotten or brushed to the side. The Oswego County Sheriff’s Department’s dedication, compassion, and hope to recover Heidi have been a blessing since the day of her abduction. They have sacrificed time with their families, sleep, and taken a lot of criticism from the public all out of respect for the missing, Heidi M. Allen.
On April 3rd, 1994, my one and only sister was abducted from her place of employment and remains missing today. The priority and attention to her case and disappearance remained at the forefront. As with most missing person cases, with each passing year our loved ones and their case transfer to the “cold case” files. We have been blessed with the involvement of our law enforcement. Sheriff Todd maintains contact with my parents throughout the year and updates his staff and new recruits of Heidi’s case. His compassion and hope to find Heidi continue to spark hope in the family.
Over the years I have traveled to Albany for our New York State Missing Person’s Day and attended events sponsored by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, such as the Ride for Missing Children. At each of these events I have the privilege to meet other family members searching for their loved ones. One thing my family and I noticed immediately was the interaction, cooperation, and concern expressed daily through the Oswego County Sheriff’s is more than something to be commended…it is a rarity.
So many families of the missing are forced to hire private investigators, spend their own money, or quit their jobs in order to make sure the search for their loved one doesn’t cease. We have only met a couple families who haven’t said, “Wow, how did you get so much support, and continued support from your law enforcement?” The answer, we are blessed above and beyond anything we could have asked for. Heidi has always been more than a case number, it is personal.
Or so I thought. This past week I learned how so many other families have felt when it comes to law enforcement’s lack of understanding and concern. Please understand: This was only one person who treated Heidi, her case, and me in this manner but my fear is that it only takes one. The disbelief quickly transitioned to anger and today, it is a concern.
As I shared my concerns about the location of Heidi’s original dental records with one investigator his response triggered my worst fear...my beloved sister’s defenders are forgetting her. His words brought emotions up from my toes, “…we are very busy and this will take time. This isn’t a big deal. It’s just dental records…It’s just to finalize the steps for NaMus…It’s just…”
My only response, “I guess since it isn’t your sister…” but after I hung up the emotions kicked in and my head swirled thoughts and fears of others “forgetting”. One person, less than a month before the eighteenth anniversary of her disappearance is too busy.
It’s NOT “just” anything. It ISN”T the final step for the family BUT it is the FIRST step of our newest journey in the life of having your loved one missing. Once the “submit” button is complete Heidi’s DNA, dental records, height, weight, and date of disappearance are then compared to the 8,844 unidentified bodies currently in the system with new bodies being found daily. The hope and expectation as we wait to see if there is a “ping” only heightens the waiting process.
Most of the original investigators on Heidi’s case have retired or serve in other capacities. Sheriff Todd will eventually leave too. It’s possible some of the deputies and investigators didn’t even live in Oswego County or work for the Sheriff’s department at the time of Heidi’s kidnapping. Heidi is a real person and her case won’t be personal to them, she is a case, a “cold case”.
Heidi M. Allen was a lively and active eighteen year old young lady with her entire life in front of her. While her case might be “cold”, I will not let her be forgotten!
The Lord woke me up Friday night with one way I might be able to share Heidi with the new law enforcement and district attorneys. I plan to present this idea to Sheriff Todd on Monday and I pray its one way I can help keep my precious sister’s name and case personal for those defending and searching.
This whole incident has caused me stress and concern. Yet at the same time, it’s something to be thankful for. His behavior opened my eyes to the real possibility that as retirements and position changes continue – Heidi could be forgotten. This is not an option!
Will you join me in prayer to reflect Jesus through my interactions with law enforcement? Pray my heart can forgive. As you pray, praise God for all the Oswego County Sheriff's Department has done and continues to do and pray as roles and positions change...Heidi is remembered. Thank you!
The LORD is my light and my salvation—
so why should I be afraid?
The LORD is my fortress, protecting me from danger,
so why should I tremble?
When evil people come to devour me,
when my enemies and foes attack me,
they will stumble and fall.
Though a mighty army surrounds me,
my heart will not be afraid.
Even if I am attacked,
I will remain confident.
Yet I am confident I will see the LORD’s goodness
while I am here in the land of the living.
Wait patiently for the LORD.
Be brave and courageous.
Yes, wait patiently for the LORD.
Psalm 27:1 – 3, 13-14
Lisa M Buske
P.O. Box 323