Connie Lorraine Christensen : “Decades-Old Jane Doe Case Solved: Daughter Reunited with Mother’s Remains in Indiana”

Death – Obituary – Accident and Crime News : Investigators have finally cracked a decades-old Jane Doe case, bringing closure to a Wisconsin woman’s family after more than 40 years. The remains, discovered by hunters in rural Indiana in December 1982, have been identified as belonging to Connie Lorraine Christensen, a 20-year-old woman who went missing in April of that year.

Christensen, who was three to four months pregnant at the time, was last seen in Nashville, Tennessee. She had left her one-year-old daughter with relatives while she traveled. However, when she failed to return home to Wisconsin, her family reported her missing.

The DNA Doe Project, a non-profit organization dedicated to solving unidentified cases, played a crucial role in the identification process. According to their findings, Christensen’s skeletal remains were found wearing distinctive clothing, including high-heeled wooden clogs, a blue button-up blouse, gray slacks, long knit socks, and a blue nylon jacket. She also wore a gold ring adorned with an opal and two diamonds.

Initially, there were suspicions of foul play, but the cause of death remained undetermined. It is now believed that Christensen died from a gunshot wound. Her remains were stored at the University of Indianapolis’ forensic anthropology department until the DNA Doe Project joined forces with the Wayne County Coroner’s Office and investigators to unravel her identity.

Simultaneously, Christensen’s relatives were working on building a family tree using ancestry and genealogy resources. This effort led them to find two closely related DNA matches on GEDmatch, a public genealogy database, which eventually led to the identification of Connie’s family.

In a poignant moment, Misty LaBean, Christensen’s adult daughter, was taken to the site where her mother’s body was discovered. LaBean, who had been left behind all those years ago, expressed her deep emotions, saying, “I have always felt like it was all about me, and I haven’t felt like that a lot in my life.” She was given the ring found on her mother’s remains and wore it to the site.

The DNA Doe Project team leader, Lori Flowers, emphasized the importance of DNA testing and uploading the results to databases like GEDmatch, as it greatly aids organizations like theirs in making these identifications.

The team leader, Missy Koski, expressed her pride in the dedicated volunteers who assisted law enforcement in bringing closure to Connie Christensen’s family. She added, “Our hearts go out to Connie’s family, and we were honored to bring them the answers they have sought for so long.”

This breakthrough in the Jane Doe case serves as a reminder of the importance of ongoing efforts to identify and bring justice to the countless unidentified victims across the country.

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