Tuesday, March 26, 2013
Friends and family gather in memorial of two Carrollton girls who disappeared 25 years ago
Susan Smalley and Stacie Madison would now be in their 40s.
It was the night of March 19, 1988.
Susan Smalley and Stacie Madison, seniors at Newman Smith High School in Carrollton, went out for a good time on Saturday night. They had planned to spend the night together.
They were never seen again by either family members or friends.
On Tuesday night, March 19, 2013 – 25 years later to the day – a crowd of about 100 people composed of relatives and friends gathered on the parking lot in front of the school where the girls were to have graduated just over two months after they disappeared.
They held lighted candles. They prayed together. Many of them came to a microphone to recall the memories they have of the two girls who would now be in their 40s.
Twenty five years have come and gone. Their mothers, Carolyn Audett and Ida Madison, and other relatives and friends are still clinging to hope that one day they will learn what happened to their loved ones and friends. Stacie’s father, however, died in 1996 without ever knowing what happened to his daughter.
Jim Hutchison of Plano, Susan Smalley’s uncle, told the crowd, “The only way to expect to ever get closure is to keep in memory of what happened.”
Stacie Madison’s mother said Carrollton police continue to investigate the disappearance of the girls. At least two Carrollton police officers, Sgt. Joel Payne and Det. Tommy Teniente, attended the candlelight ceremony in front of the high school Tuesday night.
Ida Madison said the families also hired a private investigator who turned up nothing.
She said it was during spring break that the girls had planned an evening together.
“She kissed me and walked out the front door. I never saw her again,” her mother said.
Rich Smalley, Susan’s brother, thanked the crowd for coming and said he continues to have hope that someone will come forward and tell what happened to his sister and her friend that night.
The candlelight ceremony was led by the Shaun Daugherty, discipleship pastor at Prince of Peace Lutheran Church in Carrollton.
Daugherty told the crowd, “This evening, we gather with family and friends to honor the memory of Stacie and Susan. We gather to support one another … to bring strength and courage to families and friends who continue to mourn.”
Following his opening remarks, he lit and passed out candles to many of the people in the crowd.
“We light these candles in memory. We light them in faith,” he said.
Several shared their memories of the two missing girls.
Daughtery concluded the program with a prayer in which he said, “We pray for resolution. For justice. For comfort, and for peace that surpasses understanding.”
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