with the help of technology
It’s been 35 years since Patricia “Patsy” Whitefoot’s youngest sister, Daisy Heath, disappeared from the home they shared in rural eastern Washington. The unsolved case has shaped the lives of Whitefoot and her family as they continuously cycle through waves of yearning, anger and grief. A detective called just a couple of months ago with a lead that ultimately, like all the others, went nowhere.
But while the decades haven’t produced any answers about Heath’s whereabouts, they have brought definitive change — in attitudes, awareness and technology, which are now offering new hope for Whitefoot and dozens of other families in the Yakima Valley suffering similar agony.
The local newspaper is taking advantage of that new technology for a project called “The Vanished,” a unique repository of stories and information about dozens of missing and murdered Indigenous women from the area, with an interactive map and timeline that highlight the massive scale of the situation while narrowing in on each life. The project has raised awareness, brought the community together and spurred new legislation and a state task force.