19 years later, the disappearance of Trudy Appleby is being marked by an annual prayer vigil. The 11-year-old Moline girl was last seen on August 21, 1996 from her driveway on 41st Street.

Family and friends gathered at First Baptist Church in East Moline, including her father, grandfather, uncle and aunt. Her uncle, Jay Eddlemen was in tears as he remembered his then 11-year-old niece. Appleby’s father, Dennis Appleby, says he is still angry about whoever took his daughter. This is the first year the vigil was held without Appleby’s mom and grandmother. They both past away over the last year, but the tradition continues to make sure no one forgets about the missing girl.

Trudy Appleby would be 30 years old now. Age-progressed photos are still shared with hope that someone will find her.

Amber Dunlap, Appleby’s childhood best friend, remembers the last time she saw Appleby on August 20, 1996. “We walked from my house to her driveway and I walked her halfway down her driveway like I did every night when it was time for her to go home,” said Dunlap in tears. Appleby disappeared the next morning.

Dunlap never thought it would be the last time she saw Appleby. “The worst part is not knowing, no answers.”

Appleby was last seen by a neighbor getting into a gray box-shaped vehicle with a white male in his 20’s. Moline Police Department says it is still an active investigation, and in no way is this a cold case.

Detective Michael Griffin is the new lead detective. He says to this day, the department receives multiple calls a week on the Appleby case. “There is investigative theories regarding what happened to her that day and there are people that are stronger persons of interest than others.”

“We just need our final chapter. I do think we are closer,” said Detective Griffin.

It’s the final piece of the puzzle that friends and family are hoping police will find.

“Somebody knows the truth and that is what we want even if it is anonymous,” said Dunlap. She wonders every day if her best friend is still alive. “She was my first friend and it didn’t take us long to become inseparable.”

On the 19th anniversary of Appleby’s disappearance, Dunlap took a walk down that familiar driveway, full of mystery and memories of Trudy Appleby.

Anyone with information on Appleby’s case can call the Moline Police Department of Crime Stoppers at 309-762-9500.

Video: http://kwqc.com/2015/08/21/trudy-app...-for-19-years/


Status Missing
First name Trudy
Middle name Leann
Last name Appleby

NCMEC number 822441
Date last seen August 21, 1996 00:00
Date entered 06/10/2009
Age last seen 11 to 11 years old
Age now 30 years old
Race White
Sex Female
Height (inches) 56.0
Weight (pounds) 75.0

Hair color Brown
Blue eyes
Trudy has a scar on her neck and a scar on her chest.
Pierced ears

Black bicycle stretch shorts
Blue deck shoes, white socks

Trudy Appleby was last seen getting into a silver or grey box-type vehicle with an unknown white male. The male was described as being in his 20's with brown, curly hair.