Oldest missing persons case solved

It all started in July 1960. A hiker found the body of a girl, decomposed and burned, in a remote part of Arizona. She was wearing a plaid blouse and white shorts. She became known as “Little Miss Nobody.” No one knew who she was or how she died. After more than half a century, she got her name back. She was Sharon Lee Gallegos, and she died when she was 4 years old. Thus the oldest outstanding missing persons case has been solved.

The oldest pending missing persons case has been solved. The girl's name was Sharon Lee Gallegos.
The oldest missing persons case has been solved. The girl’s name was Sharon Lee Gallegos.

DNA support

The Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office said DNA analysis of the girl’s remains helped link her to relatives. She was linked to a case in Alamogordo. The girl who was reported missing on July 21, 1960. It was the oldest unsolved case they have been able to solve.

Sharon’s relatives were informed. A nephew, Ray Chavez, spoke at the press conference. “It was very comforting to know that people were still looking,” he added. No suspects in her murder have been announced.

The tragic mystery shocked Prescott, a city in west-central Arizona. It has a population of about 45,000. In July 1960, a teacher was walking in a remote area outside Congress, Arizona. He saw the body partially buried in a sandy creek bed. Investigators believed she had been dead for at least a week.

The county sheriff's office never gave up.
The county sheriff’s office never gave up.

Relentless search

On the coffin they placed a message, when burying her. “Child of God. Date of birth unknown, date of death unknown.” On her tombstone it says “Little Miss Nobody”.

The FBI broadcast her description nationwide. A man’s footprints were found nearby, next to the girl’s footprints. Tire tracks in the area suggested that someone had driven off the road. It is unclear how the girl was killed.

The remains were exhumed in 2018 for DNA analysis. The Sheriff’s Office held a fundraising campaign in January to support the project. At last, thanks to that, the oldest pending missing person case has been solved.

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