Mesa Sisters Disappeared 35 Years Ago; Mother and Missing Kids Group Still Hope for Answers


Thirty-five years ago tomorrow, two sisters were seen walking down Baseline Road near Power Road in Mesa. The Leslie girls, Cynthia (who also went by Cindy), 15, and Jackie, 13, had told their mother they were off to a babysitting gig. But there was a bit of naughtiness: They actually planned to go to a party, and Cindy wanted to meet a boy her father had forbidden her from seeing.

The Mesa sisters who had recently moved from Page were never seen or heard from again.

Detectives interviewed kids at the party -- some said the girls had shown up, others said the girls never made it.

The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children put out a news release this week to acknowledge the 35th anniversary of their July 31, 1974, disappearance, hoping that someone will call in a tip, even after all these years. Last year, the Center produced the above and below age-progressed photos of the girls, who would now be in their mid-40s.

One account of the case notes that the orange groves and cotton fields of what was then semi-rural east Mesa were searched by authorities for clues (or bodies) -- but those areas are now fully developed with homes and shopping centers. 

Talk about a long shot -- but if you know anything, authorities ask that you call the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office at (602) 876-1011 or the missing kids organization at (800) 843-5678.

A woman at the missing kids group told us the girls' mother, Erma Prue, lives in Kingman, Arizona.



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Ray Stern has worked as a newspaper reporter in Arizona for more than two decades. He's won numerous awards for his reporting, including the Arizona Press Club's Don Bolles Award for Investigative Journalism.