Michigan woman remains committed to finding sister missing for more than 40 years

Nadine O'Dell has been missing since 1974 when she was 16

By Meaghan St Pierre - Producer

DETROIT - Brenda Lee Handloser was only 9 when her older sister Nadine disappeared.  

More than 40 years later, she remains committed to seeing her sister's case solved. 

"I know there is somebody out there that knows, you hear it all the time you know, somebody has seen something and  I know somebody had to see something it was during the day," Handloser said.

According to NamUs, the National Missing and Unidentified Persons System, Nadine Jean O'Dell was last seen on Aug. 16, 1974.  The time was shortly before 9:30 a.m. and she was walking down John Daly Road toward Michigan Avenue in Inkster.   

O'Dell was 16 years old at the time and was heading to Taylor to babysit at her boyfriend's younger siblings. Handloser said Nadine's boyfriend would meet her at the halfway point.

"She didn't make it to that point," Handloser said. "He came to the house and he was like 'Where's Nadine?' She wasn't there and that is how it all started." 

Handloser said Nadine was the second oldest child in her family.

"I just remember her as a very quiet person. She played with us and she babysat a lot," Handloser said.

If she is still alive, O'Dell would be about 59 years old.  An age-progression picture was done when she would have been 52. 

This is an age progression photo of Nadine O'Dell, who has been missing since Aug. 16, 1974. She was 16 when she went missing.

Handloser fears the worst, but wants closure. 

"I know she is dead, oh I know she is dead," Handloser said. "Nadine wouldn't stay away. She would not have stayed away. She would have came home to my mom."

Inkster police said this is still an open and active investigation and detectives want people to call in tips on it. The number to call is 313-563-9850.

"I want to bring my sister home and lay her to rest. I don't care if it is a bone or a piece of hair, a nail, I don't care, I just want my sister. She is out there somewhere laying in the ground or wherever," Handloser said.

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