4 year old Nyleen Marshall was last seen on June 25, 1983 in Clancy, Montana. She disappeared while out on a picnic with her family in Helena National Forest located in the Elkhorn Mountains.
Background of Nyleen Marshall
On September 18, 1978, Nyleen Marshall was born to Billy and Nancy Briscoe. Shortly after her parents’ divorced, Nancy later remarried Kim Marshall, who became the adoptive mother of Nyleen and her older brother Nathan. Kim and Nancy welcomed Noreen, their second daughter, three years after they got married. The five-person family was residing in Clancy, Montana, at the time of Nyleen’s disappearance.
Details of Disappearance
Nyleen Marshall travelled with her mother and father to the Helena National Forest in the Elkhorn Mountains on June 25, 1983. Her stepfather was a member of the Capital City Radio Club, and they were there for a picnic. Nyleen was playing with some other kids close to the beaver dams on Maupin Creek around 4:00 p.m.
Nyleen, who was younger than the other kids, fell behind and sat down by the dams while the others walked ahead and continued exploring the area. Nyleen was nowhere to be found when the kids turned around a few minutes later.
Her family contacted authorities upon discovering she was missing.
Investigation of Case
Over the next ten days, extensive searches were conducted in the park and along the creek where Nyleen was last seen.
The FBI assisted in the search, as did cadaver dogs and divers who searched the area’s creeks and ponds, but Nyleen was not found.
The children who were with Nyleen that afternoon saw an unidentified man in a purple jogging suit trying to convince her to play “Follow the Shadow” with him. It’s unclear if he has anything to do with her disappearance.
Nyleen’s stepfather was interrogated and briefly considered a suspect in her case, but he was quickly cleared. Her parents were convinced she had been kidnapped and distributed thousands of missing persons notices across the country.
Nyleen’s case was featured on the television show Unsolved Mysteries in 1990, prompting a viewer to call in and say he thought Nyleen was one of his classmates.
The classmate he mistook for Nyleen turned out to be Monica Bonilla, a child abducted from her noncustodial father in 1982. After being missing for eight years, she was eventually returned to her mother.
Anonymous Calls & Letters
Someone called the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children several times in 1985, claiming to have Nyleen. The calls were traced to a payphone near a pharmacy in Edgerton, Wisconsin, but the calls ceased once the payphone was identified.
In January 1986, a man claimed in an anonymous letter to Child Find of America (a missing children’s organisation in New York) that he had picked up “a girl named Kay” in Elkhorn Park and decided to bring her home.
The letter was postmarked from Madison, Wisconsin (about 30 miles from where the anonymous calls were made) and contained information about Nyleen’s case that had not previously been made public.
The author claimed to be self-sufficiently wealthy, living off investment income, and to have homeschooled Kay. He stated that she was well cared for and that he loved her so much that he couldn’t return her to her family.
Kay, he claimed, had accompanied him on numerous trips to various US states, as well as Puerto Rico, Canada, and the United Kingdom. Authorities believe Nyleen was a victim of sexual abuse based on information from the letter and phone calls.
The person who wrote the letters and called her has never been identified, and it’s unclear whether they had anything to do with her disappearance.
The location of Nyleen Marshall, and the circumstances regarding her disappearance, remains unknown.
Nyleen’s case is classified as a non-familial abduction and remains unsolved.
On September 18, 1978, a Caucasian female was born with brown hair and blue eyes. She stood 3’2 and weighed 29 pounds at the time of her disappearance.
She had a mole above her left brow and a chipped upper left front baby tooth when she went missing.
Nyleen was wearing a yellow t-shirt and shorts with no shoes or socks when she went missing.
If you have any information regarding the disappearance of Nyleen Marshall please contact the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office at (406) 225-4075.