If there are incredible cases out there, solved by the police, then this one is certainly unique! What were the odds of a 42-year-old cold case to be solved? We’d say zero, but this story proves us wrong!
One day in upstate New York, a young couple went to see the doctor. The man waited for a while at the doctor’s office for his wife to finish her appointment and then ran some errands. He’d talk to his wife about it, so she was supposed to wait for his return. But as he came back, the receptionist told him that his wife wasn’t there anymore.
The husband returned to the office only to learn that his wife wasn’t waiting for him anymore. Not realizing what was really going on, he sat on the chair for a while…
The receptionist saw him sitting and asked him if he was waiting for his wife, explaining that the woman wasn’t in the doctor’s office anymore.
The Stevens were about to start their normal day, just like they did for the past few years. Florence “Flora” Stevens was having a cold, so she had an appointment to see the doctor.
Meanwhile, her husband also had to run some errands, so he left her at the doctor’s office and went into town. Little did he know that it would be the last day he would see his wife!
Florence was 36 years old and loved nothing more than leading an exciting life. She was a bit down that week since she had caught a nasty cold, but things were not that serious.
It was August 3, 1975 when Florence disappeared without a trace. Was she kidnapped? Her husband had no idea where Flora was…
The couple had a good summer, and in 1975, people were partying every night. It was a good time to be alive. Flora was working back then at a resort in the Catskill Mountains.
The lavish resort was called the Concord, and it was where tourists would swarm the place that had 1,200 rooms. But how did she disappear?
It was very strange of Flora to disappear out of thin air, so her husband alerted the police, thinking the worse had happened.
Looking into her background, police officers learned that Flora had been a student at Lincoln High School in New York. However, aside from the fact that her husband’s name was Robert Stevens, they didn’t have clues that would lead them to her…
Aside from the information about her education, there wasn’t much to know about Florence. Robert had asked around for his wife, called relatives and her workplace. She was nowhere to be found!
The police officers were as clueless as the husband was. Was she kidnapped from the clinic? Did she leave and had an accident? Everyone who knew Flora said she was a nice woman, so she couldn’t have been in trouble.
Detectives had no clue whatsoever. People from her neighborhood got together to look for her, maybe she was still around, somewhere…
Everyone was curious about her disappearance and was wondering where she could be. Trying to find a missing person in 1975 was quite difficult!
You see, now we have the internet that helps with spreading the news and magnifying the investigation. But in 1975, things were a lot different.
Flora left no breadcrumbs that could lead to her, and as days passed, hope started to fade. What had happened to her?
As days turned into weeks and weeks into months, Flora was still missing. Every new lead was a dead end, and eventually, detectives had to close the case.
The case went cold, so the investigations stopped. Flora’s husband had to go on with his life, and nearly half a century later, he’d find out about his wife’s whereabouts!
In 2017, Yan Salomon looked at Flora’s case and realized there was a lead that could help them solve this case.
So, after 42 years, Flora’s disappearance may finally be solved! But what would the investigators find about the missing woman?
Yan Salomon had been one of the investigators of the 42-year-old case. One day, he went through the old files and spotted something interesting.
When Salomon took a better look, he couldn’t believe his eyes! It was a detail that had been overlooked at first but could have helped them find Flora!
Before checking Flora’s old case, Salomon thought about it, knowing he couldn’t solve it decades ago. They mystery about Flora still lingered, and the investigator now was so close to finding the truth…
As he picked up the case for the missing woman, Yan discovered something familiar about it. But first, he had to do some research.
Learning that your family member has been found after so many years of being missing can be incredible news, so Yan knew he had to do some research before announcing his discovery.
In the Catskills area, there was a report of human remains belonging to a woman. So he called the detective at the Sullivan office to learn more about those remains.
Yan put together a team to browse through over 21,000 files and see if there is a connection between Flora and the body he had discovered.
He then went to Sullivan County to continue his research. The remains were indeed from a woman that had lived in Sullivan County, so his investigation was finally moving on.
The investigator had to dig deeper, so he eventually found an open case that matched the remains that he had found. His team was tasked to find living relatives to the woman that he had found.
And that was an issue – nobody had been connected to the woman. Once again, Flora’s case was unsolved, so Yan handed the case to Detective Rich Morgan from the Sullivan County Police Department.
With a fresh set of eyes, Detective Rich Morgan was tasked to finding a link between the human remains and Flora’s case. After a long investigation, Morgan found new information.
The detective discovered an ID badge, so the body Salomon found now had a name. The human remains were found in the Catskill Mountains.
Probably this woman worked at the same resort as Flora did. Or maybe she was Flora! The case was getting a lot more interesting now that Morgan had new information.
Looking at the name on the badge, it was clear that this woman was a different person. That meant there was no connection between the unsolved case and the body. But digging for more information, Morgan was about to find out what happened to Flora.
After Flora has been reported missing, her husband Robert had been looking for her, and never stopped thinking where she could have been.
Ten years after her disappearance, Robert died. This means that he is no longer around, wondering what happened to his wife and whether she would come back home or not. So what did Morgan find about Flora?
Now that Robert was no longer alive, detectives had no living relatives that could help them with the investigation. But Detective Morgan has a plan…
Modern technology would help him solve what couldn’t be solved decades ago. He had access to a database of missing files, county records and transcripts.
Scouring the Social Security Database, Det. Morgan wanted to see if someone was using Flora’s social security number. And there it was!
Someone was indeed using Flora’s number. Was it a case of identity theft? Morgan would soon find out, after getting in touch with a facility.
Det. Morgan was going to see if someone had been using Flora’s identity or not. He called the assisted living facility that was 250 miles away from the county.
Apparently, someone there had use Flora’s social security number. He spoke on the phone with staff members and discovered that there was a person living there with the name Flora!
The detective couldn’t believe what he was hearing. He learned from the staff members that the woman named Flora Harris had been living there since 2001.
The case was getting a lot weirder, but considering Morgan wasn’t expecting to find Flora alive, these details were more than welcomed. So he drove down to the facility to make sure Flora was who he thought she was.
Taking a colleague with him, Det. Morgan was set on cracking the case. As soon as they laid their eyes on the old woman, the two men were shocked to see the next clue in their strange case.
Bringing a photo of the 36-year-old Flora with them, they were wondering if this Flora at the facility would recognize it…
After getting at the facility, the two detectives sat down with the old woman. They couldn’t believe it when they heard her answers.
But what was more unbelievable was her reaction when she saw her work ID at the Resort. Then, she saw her photo from when she was young and exclaimed that this was her!
The day of her disappearance still remained a mystery. You see, Flora was now suffering from dementia and most of her memories were now a blur.
In the end, the case was finally solved, although most of the details have remained with Flora. The detective had a few ideas, though.
The only conclusion to her disappearance was that maybe her marriage wasn’t exactly ok and that she may have had psychiatric issues back then.
The detectives believe that her husband may have abused Flora and she ran away when she had the chance. Then, Flora’s caretaker gave the detectives some valuable information!
Flora’s caretaker Mbuva has been caring for the woman for many years and he said that Flora told him she didn’t want to be found.
He believed that the woman went through a lot in the past. He also let them know that her catch phrase was “none of your business.”
The detectives, including Yan Salomon, were all happy they solved the case of Flora Stevens. Sheriff Mike Schiff said “It is not too often that you get to solve a 42-year-old missing person case.”
It was incredibly rewarding for the people that had spent so many hours and years looking for her, and they even got a happy-ending case.
The detectives had successfully solved a 42-year-old case and found out that the missing person was safe and sound.
We wished 78-year-old Flora would have told the investigators what happened four decades ago, but for her happiness, it’s best she doesn’t remember that time.
Now Flora is living a peaceful life at the facility, and she smiles and waves at everyone. In the end, everyone was feeling much better now that Flora’s whereabouts were finally discovered.
It was indeed a happy ending for the detectives that could finally let go of the mystery case.