Once again on Monday night, Deborah Bradley pleaded with someone out there to come forward with a tip that could help find her daughter, Lisa Irwin.
It’s been five years since Bradley’s 10-month-old daughter disappeared from her home in Kansas City, North, and there is still no break in the case. Each year in October, Bradley issues that call for help again. She says she will never stop.
“We’ll never give up,” Bradley said. “We know someone out there knows something.”
Lisa, who came to be known across the country as Baby Lisa, was reported missing early on Oct. 4, 2011. Bradley said she had last seen the girl the previous evening when she put her in her crib at the home at 3620 N. Lister Ave.
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A vigil is planned at the home for 7 p.m. Saturday. Well-wishers are welcome.
The girl’s father, Jeremy Irwin, said he returned home early on Oct. 4 after working a late shift and found the front door open, several lights on and Bradley asleep. The crib was empty.
Lisa would be 6 years old on Nov. 11. The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children has produced a new image approximating what Lisa might look like now. Lisa had blond hair, blue eyes and a birthmark on her right thigh.
Bradley said Monday that the family’s loss does not get easier to bear with time.
“It’s the opposite,” she said. “It gets harder each year. We get close to this time, and we keep thinking it has been another year gone and she’s not home. The holidays are around the corner, and her birthday. It’s harder to function and harder to cope.”
The parents believe an intruder came into their home and snatched Lisa. The case has never been closed.
“I do not have anything new to share in regard to the case of Lisa Irwin,” Kansas City police spokeswoman Capt. Stacey Graves said Monday by email. “The case still remains open and detectives follow up on all tips.”
Anyone with information is asked to call the TIPS Hotline at 816-474-TIPS (8477). A $100,000 reward offered by an anonymous benefactor remains on the table.
The family house has served as a billboard of sorts in recent years, with signs drawing attention to the missing child.
“This house needs Lisa to be a home again,” reads one. “Help bring Lisa home.”
But at least one of their neighbors complained about the signs, prompting the city codes department to order one or more of them to come down. A city spokesman said the codes specify a maximum allowable square footage of signs on noncommercial buildings.
Bradley said she and her husband will comply with the city’s order after Saturday’s vigil.
“Those signs mean a lot to us,” she said. “They’re there not just to remind people but they’re also for her, so she knows we haven’t forgotten. We’re still looking.”
Bradley said Lisa by now probably would not know that she was abducted, and whoever has her would not tell her. But Bradley has faith that her daughter will one day be returned to her parents and brothers.
“I feel it in my gut,” she said. “I have a mother’s intuition. I feel she’s out there.”