Austin police seek help with 30-year-old cold case

Austin police seek help with 30-year-old cold case

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Thirty years is a long time to be without your mom. Barbara Nash says everyday she lives with the pain.

"...It doesn't go away...Me and Gracie were close," said Barbara.

So close they were more like sisters than mother and daughter.

"I know she didn't just up and leave us. She had too much love for us."

In 1983, Gracie Nash was a 39-year-old nurse's aide at what used to be the Eastfare Nursing Home in the 2800 of East Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard. She was last seen at about 11 p.m. on the night of December 26th.

"Time has gone by, people have information that could be useful," said Detective J.J. Schmidt, with APD's Missing Persons Unit.

He says they're working together with Homicide to try and solve this 30-year-old cold case.

"We've got to pick up the pieces and try and figure out what happened," Schmidt said.

For starters, they're re-looking at evidence from Gracie's car. It was found two days after she vanished.

Schmidt added, "It was obvious signs of a struggle and a violent attack took place."

Investigators discovered blood inside, plus clothing at the scene, on east 22nd Street.

"It's still classified as a missing person," said Schmidt. "Ultimately, hopefully, we'll get there. The families want to know what's being done and if it was my loved one, I'd expect the same thing."

"December's just not a good month for us," said Barbara.

Six weeks after Gracie disappeared, Barbara says her uncle was shot to death outside his home. Investigators believe his murder and her disappearance could be connected to another brother's girlfriend.

Barbara said, "My grandmother got a phone call and it was a woman on the other end of the phone and she said she said to her, 'if you want to see your daughter alive again, you need to tell your son to drop the charges.'"

Their brother, Melvin, was shot in the wrist by his girlfriend two months before Gracie disappeared.

"You a cold-hearted person," said Barbara. "It just makes me so mad, to think what they might have done or what they did do to her. I don't wish them no good. I'm sorry. I can't."

Police found Gracie's car thanks to tips from the community and Barbara's holding out hope it will happen again.

"I just walk on faith every day," she added. "If you know something just call the police department, anything, just to help us out to get closure."

The APD Missing Persons Unit has received more than 3,000 reports so far this year. The detective says the majority of missing people are recovered.

If you have any information about Gracie Nash, please call police.

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