For 36 years a Chilliwack mother has been struggling to keep the story of her 11-year-old daughter’s 1975 murder in Abbotsford in the public eye.
Now, because of an anonymous donation, Shari Greer is able to offer a $10,000 reward for information leading to the capture and conviction of the killer, back into the public spotlight.
“What if the person who knows something lives in Chilliwack?” Greer wondered out loud Friday during a telephone interview following an RCMP news conference Thursday in Vancouver.
Kathryn-Mary Herbert was last seen in the area of Townline and Marshall Road in Abbotsford on Sept. 24, 1975, after a friend, whom she ran into while walking home with another friend, doubled her on his bike and dropped her off part-way home.
She never made it the last 300 metres.
Her body was found nearly two months later, under a wood pile near Harris Road, in an undeveloped area of the Matsqui First Nations reserve. Evidence from the scene led investigators to believe that her body had been there for some time.
RCMP Insp. Gary Shinkaruk told reporters at the Thursday news conference that police still believe there are people out there with information that could help solve the cold case.
He said witnesses at the time reported seeing “an older white American vehicle” parked south of the Abbotsford intersection where Kathryn-Mary was last seen — and the lone occupant of that vehicle may have information vital to cracking the case.
There are “persons of interest” identified by investigators, and the right information could lead to the evidence needed to arrest and convict.
Greer said she asked God a week before the anonymous donation came to do something that would help her break the case.
Now, with the $10,000 reward in hand, she prays someone will come forward with the information needed to find the killer.
That wouldn’t bring closure, she agreed, but it would bring resolution.
And if her prayers are answered, she said, “probably I will be able to sleep again.”
“There’s so many wonderings involved,” she explained. “You wonder what happened, you wonder about why, you wonder ‘did she call for me — and I wasn’t there.'”
She described Kathryn-Mary as “the little mom of the house” who looked after her little brothers, and took them everywhere she went.
“She was just so good with them, and she loved them so much … “I just pray to God that somebody has the courage to step forward.”
Anyone with information is asked to call the RCMP’s major crime unit at 1-877-543-4822 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.