MADISON, IN (WAVE) - The amazing developments that led to the discovery of three kidnapped Ohio women have renewed hope for families here in Kentuckiana who are still looking for missing loved ones.
Celestra Hoffman, the sister of missing Eastern Kentucky University student and Madison, Indiana native Molly Datillo, told WAVE 3 News she couldn't believe her eyes when she looked at a TV at work and saw that the missing Cleveland girls had been found alive after 10 years.
"I, of course, look at missing people stories," Hoffman explained, "they catch my eye just because we've been dealing with this for almost nine years now (Molly's disappearance) and I was just ecstatic for these families!"
The Datillo family established Molly's Law in Indiana after her 2004 disappearance to get law enforcement to act more quickly in missing persons cases. They hope the Ohio case attracts renewed attention to police investigations.
"We do assume that after so many years," said Hoffman, "that our loved ones are deceased."
Although Celestra's dream is to find Molly alive, at the very least, her family craves closure.
"Every time they find a body," she said of looking for answers, "you can't get your hopes up, but you always hope that maybe it's your loved one."
Sherry Thompson understands that thinking. Her daughter, Lydia Ann Perkins, went missing in Lexington when she was 14.
"It does make you realize that there is a possibility you know," said Thompson to our Lexington affiliate, WLEX-TV, of keeping her hope alive, "but that hurts too because if someone does have her captive her life has to be a living nightmare."
If alive, Lydia would be almost 30 years old. Both women are thankful other families are receiving their miracle.
"Their heart has been breaking for over ten years and it has been healed almost instantly," said Thompson of the Cleveland families.
"To think that there's hope for so many families that they may find their love ones alive," said Hoffman, "I mean, that brings me great joy for those families."
Molly Datillo loved running. This Saturday, May 11, is the annual Molly Dattillo 5K run/walk. Hundreds of school children will take part and money raised goes to scholarship programs in her memory. For more information go to www.mollydattilorunwalk.com.
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