One year ago, pregnant postal worker Kierra Coles disappeared from her Chicago home leaving few clues behind — and her family is still desperately searching for answers.
"Not a day goes past I don't think about my child and what she could be going through, what may have happened to her," her mother, Karen Phillips, recently told ABC News. "I feel she is alive — being held where, I wouldn't know."
It’s been an agonizing year for Coles’ family, who have continued to reach out to the media to try to keep their missing loved one’s case in the spotlight.
The due date for her unborn child has come and gone. Her 27th birthday quietly passed last month without any sign of the missing postal worker. Now, as the family marks the one-year anniversary of her disappearance, they are pleading for anyone with information about the case to come forward.
“If you know something, say something,” Phillips said. “Come forward and say something to end this nightmare.”
Coles disappeared after she had called into work to ask for “leave” on October 3, 2018, although it's not clear what reason she gave for the time off or whether she made the call herself.
Her family contacted authorities after they grew concerned when they hadn't heard from her in several days and were baffled by a series of mysterious circumstances.
Phillips told The Chicago Tribune she found her daughter’s car parked outside her apartment, with her cellphone and purse inside.
Even more perplexing are the reports that Coles was last captured on surveillance footage in her postal uniform leaving her South Side apartment — despite having seemingly called out of work that same day.
However, Julie Kenney, a public information representative at the United States Postal Inspection Service who is investigating the case, told Oxygen.com in November that the postal service didn’t believe it was Coles captured in the footage.
"There's other postal employees that live on that block, so the postal inspection service does not believe that is Kierra Coles on that video," she said at the time.
In the weeks before Coles disappeared, her family said she had been happy.
"She was already excited about becoming a mother," Phillips told ABC News. "That's all my child ever wanted, to be a mom and accomplish all the things she set to accomplish -- to have a nice paying job which she had, to get a new car which she bought, to move into her own apartment which she did, and to become a mother which she was about to."
Chicago Police have been relatively tight-lipped about the case, other than to say shortly after she disappeared that the department suspected foul play.
"Based on the length of time of Kierra Coles' disappearance and the fact that she has fallen off the grid, police suspect possible foul play," police said in a statement to Oxygen.com.
Chicago police officer Anthony Spicuzza told ABC News last week that the case remains an open investigation.
“The missing person case remains and open and active investigation,” he said. “If anyone has any information regarding this case they should contact detectives.”
The United States Postal Inspection Service, a law enforcement branch that conducts investigations, also said it continues to investigate “any and all leads,” the outlet reports.
At a press conference held by Coles’ father in July, Joseph Coles said he believed the father of his daughter’s baby and his girlfriend are involved in the disappearance, according to The Chicago Sun Times.
But there’s been no arrests in the case or persons of interest identified by authorities.
For now, her family will have to wait for more answers.
“It’s just a matter of time before we figure out where she is,” Joseph Coles said in July.
Kierra Coles is described as 5'4" and 125 pounds with brown eyes and black hair. She has a heart tattoo on her right hand and a "Lucky Libra" tattoo on her back.
Anyone with information about the case is urged to contact authorities.
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