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Officials in Massachusetts have released a series of age-progressed photos they hope will bring them closer to learning what happened to a young woman who disappeared more than 40 years ago.
Lynn Burdick was 18 years old when she disappeared on April 17, 1982, while working at a general store on Route 2 in Florida, Massachusetts, about 50 miles east of Albany, New York. On Aug. 30, officials with the Berkshire County District Attorney’s Office and the Massachusetts State Police jointly released four new age-progressed photos of a suspect, whose composite was generated in 1982 from a witness’s description from a separate kidnapping attempt shortly before Burdick vanished.
The new forensic sketches were a collaboration with an artist from the Lincoln Police Department, authorities stated.
Burdick worked as a clerk at the Barefoot Peddler’s Country Store, which was owned by her cousin, Suzanne, and Suzanne’s husband, and within walking distance of Burdick’s house, according to the Doe Network. Though a friend or coworker usually accompanied Burdick, she was left alone to close the shop at 9:00 p.m. the night she disappeared.
Suzanne reportedly checked in by phone at around 8:00 p.m. and spoke with Burdick before the store’s entrance bell rang, and Burdick reported a customer entering the store just before she hung up.
About 40 minutes later, a separate customer entered the empty store, and Burdick was nowhere to be found. There were no apparent signs of a struggle, and a few Burdick’s belongings had been left behind, including a can of soda and her book still open on the counter.
Missing from the store was Burdick’s McCann Vocational Tech High School jacket, her purse, and $187 taken from the store’s register.
Despite wide-scale searches, Burdick was never found.
Officials stated that “a focus” of their investigation revolved around a separate attempted abduction of a college student about 45 minutes before Burdick’s disappearance in Williamstown, 13 miles west of Florida. A witness in that case provided enough of a description to help authorities create a composite depicting a white male who was about five feet and seven inches tall.
Burdick’s family told Dateline NBC the college student was able to free herself from the suspect’s grip.
Authorities released the new images “with assorted grooming alterations,” claiming he would now be around 70 years old. It was also believed he had ties to Vermont.
“I thank the witnesses and the entire Burdick family for their strength and dedication while counting to work with investigators assigned to Lynn’s case,” said Berkshire District Attorney Andrea Harrington. “My office, the Berkshire State Police Detective Unit, and the Massachusetts State Police Unresolved Case Unit remain steadfast in following up on every lead and bringing advanced resources to unresolved homicides.”
Burdick’s case received renewed attention in 2021 when her niece, Debbie Davine, created a fundraiser to cover billboard costs to advertise her aunt’s case, according to the Berkshire Eagle.
“My grandpa and grandma passed, and they didn’t know what happened,” said Davine. “Somebody out there knows something. Maybe they’ll decide it’s time to say something."
Loved ones created a Facebook page called “Finding Lynn Burdick” in hopes of getting answers.
Lynn Burdick was described as being five feet and four inches with brown hair, blue eyes, and weighing about 115 pounds, according to the Doe Network. She was also believed to be wearing her eyeglasses when she disappeared with her high school jacket and purse.
Anyone with information about Burdick or the suspect is asked to contact the Berkshire State Police Detective Unit at 1-413-499-1112 or email the Massachusetts State Police Unresolved Case Unit at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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