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Mid-August 1996, a young girl was left home alone while her dad went to work. When he returned several hours later, she was gone.  On the day she went missing, Trudy Appleby was 11 years old and still enjoying her summer break from school. The search for Trudy has lasted 24 years. She is still not home, but police believe they are getting closer to the truth as to what happened to her that day.

Related Images

Trudy Appleby at 11, the age of her disappearance. (Image Source)

The billboard requesting any information on Trudy’s disappearance. (Image Source)

Dennis Appleby, Trudy’s father. (Image Source)

Trudy, age-progressed to 30 years old. (Image Source)

Kelly Carlson, Trudy’s best friend’s mother. (Image Source)

Brenda Gordon (L), Trudy’s Mom, and Trudy’s best friend Amber (R). (Image Source)

Moline Detective Michael Griffin from an interview with the Quad City Times. (Image Source)

William ‘Ed’ Smith, deceased.  Described by police as ‘Person of Interest’.  (Image Source)

David Whipple. Described by police and self-described as ‘Person of Interest’. Picture taken from the Illinois Sex Offender website. (Image Source)

Case Resources

Special Thanks

  • Retired Police Chief R. T. Finney for suggesting this case
  • Retired Captain Trevor Fisk for coordination of information on this case
  • Capt. Aaron Hattabaugh (Retired), Professional Voiceover Artist; opening and closing announcements
  • Mitch Marlow, Theme music “The Takedown” – songwriter, producer and recording engineer

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