9 Missing Kids Who Made Headlines in 2012 & How to Help Them

Heartbreaking 13

Ayla Reynolds
Have you seen Ayla Reynolds?
It was a rough year for children in America in 2012. The tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary is freshest on our minds, of course, but this was the year when 672 of the 715 children reported missing to the International Centre for Missing and Exploited Children disappeared here in the United States. From baby Ayla Reynolds to Iowa cousins Lyric Cook and Elizabeth Collins, we have spent countless hours tied to our computer screens willing miracles to happen, for little ones to be reunited with their distraught parents.

Wonder what has happened to them? Here's a look at the latest on the cases that made us hug our own little ones closer in 2012:

1. Lyric Cook and Elizabeth Collins: The Iowa cousins took off on a bike ride in July only to befall tragedy. The bodies of both girls were discovered earlier this month by a hunter in a wildlife area. Police are still investigating the case to determine who caused their death, and the reward for information that provides them answers is climbing.

2. Ayla Reynolds: Her disappearance in late 2011 carried over into the near year as police in Maine searched desperately for the little girl. As of today, a full year later, Ayla's remains one of only three missing child cases in Maine to remain unsolved. Anyone with information that could bring Ayla home is asked to call Waterville Police at 207-624-7076.

3. Dylan Redwine: The 13-year-old Colorado boy disappeared while visiting his dad over the Thanksgiving holiday, and no one has heard from him since. The teen's dad reported seeing him asleep before heading out to do some early morning errands, but when he returned the boy was gone. A reward for information leading to his return has risen to $20,000.

4. Jessica Ridgeway: Teenager Austin Sigg was arrested in October and accused of murdering the 10-year-old Colorado girl. In the months since, prosecutors have added to the charges, most recently accusing Sigg of sexual assault of the little girl. He is expected to return to court in February.

5. Autumn Pasquale: The mother of one of the accused killers of 12-year-old Autumn turned her son in to police in New Jersey. Since then, the 15- and 17-year-old offenders have been going through court proceedings in juvenile court, but a judge has barred the media from entering.

6. Saanvi Venna: There was hope that 10-month-old Saanvi would survive after being abducted from her grandmother's care -- even though grandma had been murdered. Those hopes were dashed with the discovery of the baby's body in October and the arrest of close family friend. Raghunandan Yandamuri has pleaded not guilty to second degree murder, but there is talk that Pennsylvania authorities may seek the death penalty in the case.

7. Isabel Celis: The 6-year-old disappeared from her Tucson, Arizona bedroom this spring, striking fear in hearts of parents everywhere that even at home kids are not safe. Seven months later, there are still no answers for the Celis family. If you have information that can bring her home, call police at 520-882-7463.

8. Jhessye Shockley: Also from Arizona, Jhessye Shockley went missing in October 2011, but the case of the missing 5-year-old carried over into 2012 as investigators continued to come up empty. The little girl's mom, Jerice Hunter, allegedly left her with older siblings the day she disappeared. Since then police haven't been able to track down the little girl. But they opted to arrest Hunter anyway, charging her earlier this year with first degree murder and child abuse in September. The case is still winding its way through the courts, and police continue to search for the little girl.

9. Lisa Irwin: It's been more than a year since the 10-month-old disappeared from her Missouri home, but parents Jeremy Irwin and Deborah Bradley have desperately tried to keep their daughter's case in the news in an attempt to find her. This fall they revealed that they still buy her toys and clothes. If you have information that could help bring this little girl home, call police at 816-474-TIPS.

Which of these cases hit you the hardest?


Image via National Center for Missing & Exploited Children

missing person, year in review


To add a comment, please log in with

Use Your CafeMom Profile

Join CafeMom or Log in to your CafeMom account. CafeMom members can keep track of their comments.

Join CafeMom or Log in to your CafeMom account. CafeMom members can keep track of their comments.

Comment As a Guest

Guest comments are moderated and will not appear immediately.

sand008 sand008

All of them. When children go missing, hurt, or killed. It hits home. Children are so innocent. It breaks my heart

LoveM... LoveMyKBabies

They are all so sad. I hope the families of the solved cases find peace & the families of the unsolved have their children returned. The one that hits the hardest is Lisa Irwin. My youngest is only a few weeks younger than her.

Angie... AngieHayes

Yes, Lisa Irwin went missing and she was only a week younger then my daughter, made me feel extra sad. I wish people could just get along and never do such horrible things to one another.

nonmember avatar Jesse

It all breaks my heart. WHY DO THIS?!? They are children, they've never hurt anyone. Do they not deserve a chance at life like everyone else? I think the one that hit me hardest and still hurts me till this day is Ayla Reynolds. Shes only a couple months older than my youngest daughter. Not only that but they're both blondes with dimples...And the biggest heartbreak factor is the shared name. My daughter is Ayla Nichole Carvlin.

nonmember avatar Heather

Autumn Pasquale ... She lived only a few miles from my fathers house and she was murdered within a mile if my fathers house. Everytime I visit my dad I can't help not think of that poor little girl.

nonmember avatar Meredith Medley

I am confused about Baby Ayla, because I read an article the other day that said she had been found back in like April time frame with her dad in Mexico. The picture of the child I recognize, I will check my resources again to make sure its the same child. Stand By...

phoeber phoeber

They are all horrible I am surprised Caleb Pacheco did not make the list. After a year of his family searching for him they made a Facebook page trying to reach out and find their missing child only to find out he was murdered in cold blood by his mother Juanita Kinzie and hidden under their trailer they lived in at the time of his death. (Another Colorado case.)  Or Kayla Chadwick who is missing from Fort Morgan, Colorado. She disappeared March 26, 2012 without a trace. The family has been door to door with fliers and reaching out for as much help as they can get with no results. No body seems to know what happened to this 17 year old girl.  

nonmember avatar Mommyof2

Very close to home as Dylan went missing from te next town over. Praying he is found.

nonmember avatar nickey

All of them hurt me the ones that hit close to home though are lisa irwin and jessica ridgway. Jessicas hit close to home bc her dad lives 20 min from us and lisa irwin is only 45 min from us

1-10 of 13 comments 12 Last