WASHINGTON — It was five years ago that little Relisha Rudd was last seen alive in Southeast DC. But some dedicated volunteers continue searching for her.
Henderson Long figures he and his fellow volunteers at D.C.'s Missing Voice have handed out 60-thousand photos of the little girl who vanished in a web of murder, suicide, and mystery.
"I have days when I think she's alive. I have days when I think she's no longer with us," said Long.
She was eight, and had been living at a homeless shelter. A janitor there took her home and to several hotels, before the janitor and his wife both turned up dead, the wife murdered, the janitor, a suicide.
Despite years of searching, police have never found any sign of Relisha.
With social media and shoe leather, Long has struggled to find answers for hundreds of D.C.-area families.He knows how it feels to have a missing loved one.
His aunt was missing for nearly 20 years, before police finally identified her body. "That's my whole motivation for investigating these cases. Because I know how it feels.
He feels a special connection to Relisha, who was eight when she disappeared. That's the same age as Long's own daughter. Gabi. "Relisha Rudd is on my mind, every day."
Police say they've never stopped looking for Relisha. Henderson Long says he'll never give up either. "People tell me I make a difference. I hope that I am. I pray that I am."