Lauren Spierer, a 20-year-old Indiana University student from Westchester County, disappeared after a night out with friends on June 3. Over the last twelve weeks, volunteers helped organize massive searches for the aspiring fashion major, tens of thousands of individuals followed the case on social media and strangers across the nation demonstrated an outpouring of support for Lauren’s devastated, yet determined family, who has sworn never to give up until they find Lauren.
To date, police still do not know what happened to her.
Today marks the three-month anniversary of her disappearance.
Lauren’s heartbroken mother, Charlene, released the following letter through the Twitter account @NewsonLaurenS. The letter clearly expresses her anger at the person she believes knows what happened to Lauren, and where Lauren is, but has not spoken up.
Below is the unedited letter.
September 3, 2011
To whom this may concern:
Let me begin by introducing myself, although, I am sure you know who I am. I am Charlene Spierer, Lauren’s mother. Perhaps we have met. You are responsible for Lauren’s disappearance. You know where she is. You are guilty of a heinous crime. That, you know.
Now for what you don’t know….you don’t know what it’s like to call your wife knowing you will deliver news which will crush her. I cannot speak for my husband. I cannot imagine the resolve it took for him to make that call. I can only tell you what it was like to receive it.
Initially, you feel physically sick. Your heart races, your breathing all but stops. You feel as if you cannot stand. The heat rises and your head pounds. You are speechless. You are incredulous. After the initial shock, the adrenalin takes over. You call the police department, you call the airlines, and you wait…each passing moment agony. You desperately want someone to call you, to tell you Lauren is OK. You miss an incoming “blocked” call. Your heart sinks. You think you’ve missed the one call that can lead you to the discovery of your daughter. I frantically look up the names and numbers of every hospital in and surrounding Bloomington. I make the calls. No Lauren Spierer, no Jane Doe has been admitted to any emergency room. All of this in the first hours of having heard about Lauren’s disappearance.
I count the hours, minutes, seconds until my father can drive me to the airport to make the trip to Bloomington, Indiana. Imagine a grandfather, driving his daughter to the airport, on her way to discover what has happened to his granddaughter. Imagine that. There were few words exchanged. There are no words.
Robbie and I meet in the Indianapolis airport. He arrives from New York, I arrive from Alabama after visiting my family. The energy between us is tangible. It guides us through the steps and keeps us focused. Get the car, drive to Bloomington, get to the Bloomington Police Department. Hoping against hope the news of Lauren’s disappearance has changed and that she has been found. Of course, you know, that was not meant to be. After our meeting, we create the first poster for our missing daughter. We get the posters printed. I begin hanging posters; Robbie begins searching the area where Lauren was supposedly last seen.
Much has happened over the past three months. I won’t bore you with the details, if you’ve even gotten this far in reading this letter. I will say we have had the support and guidance of a multitude of people which has helped keep us going. For that generosity, we will be forever grateful.
Robbie and I recently returned to New York for Rebecca’s birthday. Maybe you knew that already (after all you know more about Lauren’s case than anyone. You know what happened. You know where she is.) While there we were surrounded by family. My young nephew asked me if we would celebrate Lauren’s birthday even if she wasn’t there. A question asked so innocently and coming from one who knows the joy of celebrating a birthday. I didn’t really know what to say. Now I do. Of course we will celebrate Lauren’s birthday.
Before we left Bloomington you could begin to feel the influx of activity, the students coming back to begin their fall semesters. You could feel the excitement and anticipation of reuniting with friends and beginning another year which will set you on the road to a life with a promising future. This time last year, Robbie, Rebecca, Lauren and I were all sharing those same experiences. Here’s something you probably don’t know. This year is considerably different. We packed and shipped all of Lauren’s things home. 19 boxes. Can you imagine that so much promise would fit into 19 boxes? I won’t go into the details of what it was like to pack Lauren’s things. I will just tell you it was excruciating. Every moment was excruciating.
Lauren and I share many things. Today I can add to that list. Today marks three months since Lauren’s disappearance. It is also my birthday. If you think for a minute, her father and I are going to disappear, think again. We are just as determined today as we were day one. You should know that Lauren is precious to us. Do you think this is a game? This is no game. We are in this for the long haul. Do you think we are going to walk away without finding out the answers? Do you think we are going to rest until we find Lauren? We will not. YOU HAVE NO IDEA WHO YOU HAVE TAKEN FROM US. We will NEVER give up. What are you thinking? I would really like to know. I am waiting to hear from you.