OSWEGO, NY – Do you recognize this woman?
Heidi M. Allen was kidnapped at the age of 18 on Easter Sunday 1994 while working alone at the D & W Convenience Store in New Haven.
She remains missing today.
But thanks to Diana Trepkov, forensic artist, we know what Heidi might look like today.
This past April, Heidi’s older sister, Lisa Buske, published a book titled, Where’s Heidi? One Sister’s Journey.
She shared the saga of Heidi’s kidnapping from the sister’s perspective.
Many think of the effect on the parents and grandparents, yet the sibling’s journey is sometimes overlooked, although theirs is just as traumatic but different, Lisa noted.
It is natural and right to focus on the parents and the missing, she said.
Yet after the initial trauma, it’s important to recognize the needs and feelings of the grieving sibling, she added.
It is because of Buske’s book that the updated age progression artwork is available.
Laurie Travis read the book in hopes of finding hope.
Her sister went missing more than 28 years ago.
Travis knows the pain of “losing” a sibling and living with the unknown.
After she read Where’s Heidi?, she shared Lisa (and Heidi’s) stories with forensic artist, Diana Trepkov.
“Laurie read my book and shared it with Diana,” Buske said. “Diana was so moved by Heidi and my story – she did this for our family.”
Trepkov and Buske exchanged emails and messages for a few days before Trepkov went to work on an updated age progression of Heidi, who would be 38 years old.
Allen’s family appreciates and is thrilled with the likeness Trepkov captured.
“We are all thrilled with this likeness. Mom’s first words were, ‘That’s my girl,'” Buske told Oswego County Today.
The updated age-progression is in the process of being added to Heidi’s National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, NamUs, Doe Network, and Codeus accounts – in order to increase the chances of matching her remains with one of the thousands of remains across the United States.
“Diana did two different styles of hair and the face is slightly different on the left to the right, to give people a couple varieties,” Buske explained. “She kept the length (of hair long) because most of us, at age 38, in our family, still had longer hair.”
For more information on Trepkov, visit http://www.forensicsbydiana.com/
Buske will be at the New Haven Town Farmers’ Market Mondays from 3:30 – 7 p.m. with an 8×10 photograph and a large banner displaying of Heidi’s age progression. She also has copies of her three books available for sale and signing.
To contact Buske: [email protected] or stop by the market located on Route 104 in the town of New Haven in front of the Town Hall and Highway Department Garage.
For information on the market itself, contact Deb Allen, town clerk at 963-3900.