You will either allow the family and office time to grieve or you pick up the phone immediately to locate a new dentist office so your files can be forwarded and your next six month cleaning can be added to the calendar. Life goes on…or does it?
NCMEC continues to update Heidi’s records so her DNA, dental records and statistics are both accurate and current. Once this step is complete and then verified through the Oswego County Sheriff’s Department, her dentist, and the family…another search begins. All of this information will then be compared against the thousands of unidentified bodies across the United States.
BUT this can’t be done until ALL the information is entered and verified against the original dental record!
Our dentist has both retired and passed away since Heidi’s disappearance. While the rest of our family transferred to a different dentist, there was no reason to switch Heidi over because she is missing. A vital and important lesson has been learned in the past couple day, one that breaks my heart because I didn’t think of it almost ten years ago.
Multiple phone calls to my current dentist to see if by some odd chance he had Heidi’s records confirmed…he doesn’t. Where do I look next? Who do I ask? Thankfully my dentist’s staff was able to provide phone numbers to our previous dentist’s daughter who cleaned out his office and records after his death. I gave her a call, explained who I was and the reason for my call. She was glad to help but the news she had sent my stomach to my ankles.
Why are dental records so important? Other than DNA, our teeth are the best identifiers for law enforcement and medical examiners to identify remains. My three things to be thankful for: 1) The Sheriff’s Department has a copy 2) Sheriff Todd and Inv. Pitcher have made the location of Heidi’s original dental records a priority, and 3) All our DNA testing is complete!!
If you click on the photograph of Heidi’s teeth you will be directed to NamUs; a search engine to match up missing persons with the multitude of missing persons across the country. Once verified…let the database search begin.