Lyons Sisters Q & A

Discussion in 'Sheila and Katherine Lyon' started by shipmatekate, Jul 10, 2007.

  1. Richard

    Richard Well-Known Member

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    Your timeline seems pretty accurate as to what was reported in the newspapers of the time. A couple of comments:

    Some of the times are approximate or estimates and they all come from different sources. You cannot draw any hard conclusions by comparing them.

    The boy (David) who stated that he saw the girls at "7:30" walking to the mall may have either mispoken or was misquoted - or possibly he was correct in the time. As you indicate, however, he was soon discredited or disbelieved by police. They had basically written him off as early as 28 March, and so indicated in the press. To this day, however, he claims to have seen the girls, but I do not know what time the feels he saw them.

    The two boys who stated that they saw the girls walking down Drumm near Devon between 2:30 and 3 PM actually came forward within a day or two after 28 March, but police did not release that sighting information to the press and public for about 2 weeks. Thus the 2 week delay mentioned. One of those boys was described as "Over 15" and a school friend or acquaintence of Sheila. The other boy was described only as the driver of the car, who corroborated the incident of seeing two girls walking down Drumm, but he did not know either girl before their disappearance. For a more detailed post on this see:

    The "Over Fifteen" story: Last reported sighting on 25 March 1975...
    in this thread: Potential Suspects and Persons of Interest - Page 4 - Post #98
    LINK:
    http://www.websleuths.com/forums/showthread.php?t=35536&page=4

    Regarding the statement of James Mann, I have not found any reference to his sighting them in any source prior to the 2005 30th anniversary article. I have confirmed that a James Mann did live at that address (corner of Drumm and Deven) both in 1975 and in 2005.

    One statement (which came from the Washington Post) about "she was sitting on the Easter Bunny's arm as children talked to the bunny" has always struck me as odd. I think what was meant was that she was sitting on the ARM of the Easter Bunny's CHAIR, listening to children who would have been on his lap or next to him on the chair.
     
  2. SharetheLight

    SharetheLight Share the Light, Share the Love

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    I found the James Mann comment very odd coming 30 years later and wonder what his part in the 1975 search/gathering info was. Maybe police had this information but didn't release it? I just think it very peculiar. . .
     
  3. Richard

    Richard Well-Known Member

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    It is puzzling. I feel that if police did have a report from Mr. Mann in March or April of 1975, that they would have included it in their press briefings. It certainly would have corroborated "Over Fifteen's" reported sighting.

    In addition, if it had been in the police files, the Case Officer would not have said to me some 25 years later that they had reason to doubt the Over Fifteen story. He never mentioned such a sighting back then.

    Mr. Mann's story might be true, and I am sure that he truly believes it. But human memory is a strange thing, especially after 30 years has passed. He could have read in the paper that the girls were sighted near his house, and then connected that with a memory of waving to the girls on a previous occasion.

    OR - perhaps he actually saw the girls that day, waived to them AND even reported it to the police, but they misfiled or disregarded the report.

    That said, if Mr. Mann's statement is NOT in police files, Montgomery County Police Cold Case detectives certainly SHOULD interview Mr. Mann now to consider his information.
     
  4. Fukiyama

    Fukiyama Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the comments, Richard. I will edit accordingly for future versions.
     
  5. liz b.

    liz b. Well-Known Member

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    Richard,
    I would like to thank you and the other posters on this case ; you have provided so much valuable information and resources. I have been reading as many old news reports as I can find, and I really like to read the comments left by readers of articles about the case. I noticed that many readers in the Wheaton/Silver Springs area mentioned that they had been approached by adult men when they were the ages of the Lyon sisters. One writer who grew up in Wheaton said something interesting : she wrote that in her opinion there seemed to be a weird kind of vibe around the area. Said that there were a lot of strange adult males in that area,who seemed to always be on the lookout for young girls out alone....

    You have done an amazing job here. Do you ever see this case being solved ?
     
  6. Richard

    Richard Well-Known Member

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    Liz,
    Thank you for the kind words. I feel that this forum has brought out a lot of information from a lot of folks who were in some way connected with or affected by the Lyon Sisters and their disappearance.

    This thread, started by Sharethelight, is in particular a good one. I feel that the very title of it "A Place For Questions" is key to the case eventually being solved. You have to ask the questions before the answers will come.

    The case is a very difficult one with a lot of confusing information, and very little in the way of solid clues. But I do believe that it may one day be solved. The officers assigned to this case have already solved some equally difficult cold cases which seemed unsolvable for years.
     
  7. liz b.

    liz b. Well-Known Member

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    I found out that the WheatonTriangle Bowling alley, the one Mrs. Lyon went to, was located right next to the Wheaton Plaza Mall. The bowling alley is now a Metroplex cinema within the mall itself...

    So it seems that the whole family, except for the youngest boy ( ? ) was at or very close to the mall that mid morning/afternoon, not together,and not at the same time ?

    I wonder which way Mr. Lyon drove to meet his wife at around 3pm ish ? He could have driven very close to where the girls passed. MOO In fact, if he drove anyplace near where the two boys in the car saw the sisters, at around the same time, I wonder if that might narrow down the time and place where the two girls were last ? I mean, if Mr.Lyon drove in the same area, at around the same time, and didn't see the girls, it would seem to mean that they vanished from a certain spot, and the time could be more closely fixed ? MOO
     
  8. Richard

    Richard Well-Known Member

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    The walking route that the girls normally took was through a wooded area and down a road which was not completely linked to the mall parking lot. Drumm Ave itself has an area between Plyers Mill Rd and the Mall which is (and was) closed to vehicle traffic.

    The route that Mr. Lyon would have driven to Wheaton Plaza - or to Downtown Wheaton would most likely have been main roads, taking Plyers Mill Road to University Blvd, or to Georgia Ave.

    Taking the residential roads would have meant a lot of twists and turns - more distance, and a lot more driving time.
     
  9. liz b.

    liz b. Well-Known Member

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    Yes, I do think you are probably right about the route Mr.Lyon took to the bowling alley. There are a lot of "if only " issues in this case...it is very sad indeed...
     
  10. Motherof5

    Motherof5 Active Member

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    I have some questions...feel free to jump in if have answers.

    1. Mary was bowling that day and she was bowling at Wheaton Triangle Bowling Alley which was right next to the mall?

    2. Did Mary drive back then? Did she walk to the bowling that day or get a ride as John was sleeping?

    3. John left to get Mary at what time? What time did the parents get back home after running errands?

    4. Someone had mentioned seeing a photo of the girls standing out in their yard,I think. I can't remember who saw it...but I'm wondering where they saw the photo and can they describe the photo again? I can't find the post about it.
     
  11. Jeb

    Jeb New Member

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    The way I remember it, the bowling alley was probably 1 or 2 blocks from Wheaton Plaza.
     
  12. Richard

    Richard Well-Known Member

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    Here is what was reported in the Washington Star regarding events and times in the afternoon and early evening of 25 March 1975. Information came from an interview with Mary Lyon:

    quote:
    At 3:30 p.m., Mrs. Lyon arrived home from her bowling trip. The girls weren't there. She said it was her worst bowling performance ever - so bad, in fact, that she is embarrassed to tell her score.

    Her husband had met her outside the Wheaton Triangle bowling alley. From there they went together to the Kensington bank before it closed and then on to a used bookstore.

    Back home, Mrs. Lyon recalled, "John went in and lay down. I changed my clothes and worked in the front yard for three hours. The boys had come home by then."

    As she was gardening throughout the afternoon, Mrs. Lyon wondered about the girls. "I hadn't told them absolutely they had to be home at 3. So I thought that maybe they had stopped off at a movie or a friend's house."

    The Lyons customarily do tell their children to be home at 6 o'clock for dinner, although the food usually isn't served until 45 minutes later.

    Six o'clock came and went, however, with no sign of the girls. "As we sat down to eat fried chicken," Mrs. Lyon was more angry than worried, so much so that "I even thought I wouldn't give them any chicken when they got home."

    By 7 o'clock, however, the anger had given way to anficty. "I said to John, 'I don't understand this," Mrs. Lyon said, so she and her husband drove in their Ford station wagon down Jennings and up Drumm to Faulkner to see if they could spot their daughters walking home.

    "Back home," said the mother, "I got out my little phone book and started calling their freinds." "John left and went to the Plaza to look some more. He got home at 8 p.m."

    "We were really scared by then. John called the police. I knew when it started to get dark they'd know to come home. But they didn't."

    The Montgomery County Police took the Lyons' call "seriously as soon as I told them how old they were." said Mrs. Lyon "They sent a police car over and took a complete description and the police called all the kids who were friends of my daughters'."

    Still no luck. unquote.


    Regarding the photo in question. I may have mentioned seeing such a photo in a newspaper. It was somewhat blurry and it was of both Sheila and Kate standing next to each other. They were outside, and wearing coats. I do not know when or where the photo was taken, but not likely that it was the day they disappeared.
     
  13. Motherof5

    Motherof5 Active Member

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    I appreciate the article that you posted Richard....but It doesn't answer my questions. I wish we knew....

    Mary was bowling that day and she was bowling at Wheaton Triangle Bowling Alley which was right next to the mall

    1. Was Mary able to drive back then? 2. Did she walk to bowling that day or get a ride as John was sleeping?

    3.. John left to get Mary at what time?

    Liz B has found that Wheaton Triangle Bowling Alley, was right next to the mall in 1975 and as she has mentioned.....Mary was next to the mall....Jay was at the mall.....and John drove to get Mary from bowling....3 family members were very close that day at different times that the girls were at the mall. In fact...I've asked LE to clarify if Jay saw the girls near the Easter bunny AND eating at the Orange Bowl...LE said that Jay saw them both times. Would be rather difficult for a "stranger" to avoid Jay,at the mall....Mary,beside the mall and John driving to and from the bowling alley. However...someone that knew the family could avoid family members...they could simply "run into the girls" ask about the family and at the very least....find out where John and Mary were if not Jay. He would only have to offer a ride home and because they knew and trusted him....they would go. I would really appreciate it if anyone could answer my questions about John and Mary,above. Thanks:please:
     
  14. SideKick

    SideKick Well-Known Member

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    Hi!
    Just popping in regarding the easter bunny! I didn't read the entire thread but was wondering what the easter bunny was made of? Was there a human under a costume? Or was this just a stuffed costume at the mall?

    Also, were they any photos taken of the Easter Bunny affair at the mall that day?
     
  15. Motherof5

    Motherof5 Active Member

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    I do remember that we've talked about the Easter bunny....but can't remember which thread. I'm thinking the bunny was an actual person in a costume though.
     
  16. Richard

    Richard Well-Known Member

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    As I recall, the Easter Bunny was a person inside a costume. There was a chair and area set up near the "Mall Center" near a fountain. Sheila and Kate Lyon were seen near the Easter Bunny Display by their brother, Jay that day, and another boy stated that he saw Sheila "sitting on the Easter Bunny's arm" and listening to little children talk to him. I have always felt that he meant she was sitting on the arm of his chair.

    In regard to Mary Lyon, the girls' mother and her schedule that afternoon: The article states that her husband John met her at the bowling alley and that together the went to the bank and then to a used book store. They arrived home around 3:30 PM.

    So whether Mary walked to the bowling alley and was picked up by John driving the car - or Mary drove the bowling alley and John walked there to meet her is not clear. I believe that they owned only one car and that was a Ford Station Wagon. So it is most likely that they rode home together in the same car that afternoon.
     
  17. SideKick

    SideKick Well-Known Member

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    ~ Thank you. Did anyone find out who the EBunny was? Had he/she been investigated?
    Taking 2 girls of that age must have been quite tricky. I can't fathom the abduction in my mind. Was there 2 suspects involved in the disappearance? One to take one girl, the other to subdue the other...?
     
  18. Richard

    Richard Well-Known Member

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    Of course, no one was ever named by police as a suspect in the girls' disappearance. There was very little forensic information to go on regarding how or even IF the girls were abducted.

    That said, it is very likely that they were abducted and going on that assumption, the abductor(s) most likely had a vehicle to immediately transport the girls away from the area.

    It is possible that more than one person abducted the girls. Certainly with two, one could subdue them while the other drove - as has been the case with other abductions. That goes on the supposition that force was needed.

    It is, however, just as possible (and perhaps more likely) that only one man abducted the girls. Using a seemingly friendly ruse is probably how he got them to enter his vehicle voluntarily.

    Pedophiles tend to work alone. Had there been two abductors, the chance of them eventually being caught would have been greater. Two persons working together to abduct two little girls by force or intimidation would run a much higher risk of being seen by suspicious shoppers or home owners in the residential area.
     
  19. liz b.

    liz b. Well-Known Member

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    This is the post I was looking for in reference to Mr. Mann. It doesn't sound to me like he was interviewed about his sighting of the two girls...maybe he didn't inform LE at the time ? And yet,it would have been so important if he had told LE... He would have been the only adult to see them after they left the mall... IIRC, he still lives in the same house...

    JMO
     
  20. Richard

    Richard Well-Known Member

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    As I have said before, I just don't know if Mr. Mann spoke with police in 1975, or at any time after that. I am pretty certain that he was never interviewed by any press reporters until 2005 when his story was reported on the 30th anniversary of the girls' disappearance.

    As you point out, he would be the only adult witness to have seen the girls that afternoon, since all other known witnesses were young teens.

    If there is any kind of record of Mr. Mann making a statement in 1975, it would be a very strong piece of evidence. Unfortunately, if there is no such record, then investigators are left with a story based on 30 year old memories.
     

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