Dorothy Jean Richardson, age 21, went missing from Abilene, TX on June 30, 1981.   There isn’t much information available on her case, and I’ve been able to find very little to add.   I don’t see any media coverage and as of this posting, DNA is not submitted.   I could not find any information on her biological family, other than that her maiden name is Howard.

I think it’s possible that she doesn’t have any surviving family members.  I can’t see any evidence that anyone is looking for her, and the fact that DNA is not on file makes me wonder if she has any living family.

All that is known, is that she left the house on foot following an argument with her husband.  She apparently had a car, but it was inoperable, and it was left behind.   She had married her husband in 1979, and he is now a registered sex offender and transient in Florida.  I am not naming him here because he has not been named a suspect as far as I can see, and his current status doesn’t necessarily mean anything.  Her marriage record isn’t difficult to find though.

Sometimes in situations like this, I wonder if perhaps the person isn’t actually missing.  Maybe her husband reported her missing, and she did leave him and went back to her family, thus explaining why nobody seems to be looking for her.   It’s unlikely after all this time, but it has happened.

There was a case several years ago of a college student who went missing.  She’d left her apartment in Hawaii abruptly, leaving her belongings behind.   It turned out that her landlord had reported her missing, but her family knew where she was all along.  The missing person did not know she had been reported missing until she googled her name.

Elizabeth Bishop went missing from Abilene, TX about three months after Dorothy’s disappearance.  Henry Lee Lucas was suspected in Elizabeth’s disappearance, though he denied involvement.  I don’t know that he was ever questioned about Dorothy.

I wish there were more to say about Dorothy’s case.  I hope she is ok.



The Charley Project


9 thoughts on “Dorothy Jean Richardson

  1. I noticed on the Doe Network, they mentioned that Dorothy had bleached her hair blonde before she went missing. Is any photos of her with her new hair color? Obviously this pic is from way before she disappeared.

    • That was the only photo I could find. There is another black and white version of the same photo out there, but no other ones that I could find. I don’t think she was from Texas, since I couldn’t find a birth record either or any likely yearbook photos.

  2. I’m from Abilene Texas.
    I was 1 in 1981- so I don’t remember this of course.
    I have however read and researched it some.
    What I read made it sound like she had a child
    and he’d husband and her had an aurgument.
    and she left on foot.
    The article sort of made it sound like he was kind of fishy.
    Abilene is a city of close to 200000 in West
    Central Texas- we have an air force base 3 university and 2 junior colleges.
    I don’t think she has family here because we still have a small town feel- everyone knows everyone or knows someone who knows someone.
    Mike Howard went missing from here in the 80s and his family is still around talking about it. Also I-20 runs through here so it’s easy to get in and out of town quickly.
    Abilene is a safe city and these kinds of crimes are usually committed by family members in this area. I’m curious if her husband was in the air force and maybe they were here and her family is out of state or over seas.

    • Wow, very interesting that you mention Mike Howard, I haven’t heard of him but I will look it up. Howard is Dorothy’s maiden name.

      Do you recall when the article was from? I looked around but couldn’t find one. I haven’t seen anything about Dorothy’s husband other than finding that he is in Florida now, with no permanent address, and is a registered sex offender.

      Thank you for commenting!

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