INDIANAPOLIS — It’s a feeling that never goes away for the family of Jessica Masker, the feeling of loss and grief — with no definitive answers about what happened to the then 24-year-old mother of two, who hasn’t been seen or heard from in nine years.
“Everyone asks what we expect. I want them to know this is someone’s daughter, someone’s mom,” said Masker’s mom, Cheri Edwards.
Edwards and many other members of Masker’s family, gathered as they do every year, this time at Christian Park, to pass out flyers with Masker’s picture on them, hoping to generate leads about what happened to her.
“We are going to try and spread apart from every side of town. All over the state of Indiana and try and get these flyers out here because someone knows something and we either need her home safe or closure,” said Masker’s sister, Ashley.
According to police, Masker was last seen on the southeast side of Indianapolis, near Washington and DeQuincy streets, on April 15, 2013.
At the time of her disappearance, investigators didn’t think any foul play was involved.
Masker’s family has always believed differently.
“We know someone knows something. She didn’t just disappear,” said Ashley.
Masker’s family says she had just given birth to a premature baby who was still in the hospital, who she regularly went to see when she went missing.
According to her family, Masker had also been in an abusive relationship and was struggling to kick a drug habit.
“She’s a very beautiful person with a very good soul, a very good spirit. Some people didn’t see that in her, but of course, her family and friends did,” said Edwards.
That’s why those same family and friends say they’re not giving up.
The word closure is hard for them, but they say something has to change.
“We don’t want to think that Jessica is gone. It has been nine very hard long years and even with us to say, 'closure,' it hurts a lot because that’s thinking the worst,” Ashley said.
For this family, nine years is too long to go without knowing what happened to someone they love.
“We’ll never stop searching for her,” Ashley added.
They hope others won’t stop, either.
Masker’s family has created a GoFundMe account to raise money they hope to give to the person or persons, who provides the tip or lead that brings Jessica home.