The Alexandria, Indiana sky turned a pale shade of pink as friends and family members lit candles in honor of 49-year-old missing mother Suzanne Morphew on Saturday night.
The mother of two disappeared from Salida, Colorado on May 10, 2020, Mother’s Day, after reportedly leaving for a bike ride that morning. More than three months later, Suzanne’s brother, Andrew “Andy” Moorman, says he is without answers as to what happened to his little sister.
“She is the sweetest girl on the planet,” Andy told Dateline. “Suzanne walked into a room, she would light it up. She was just a really kind person, everybody loved her. I don’t think you’ll find a soul that says they didn’t love my sister.”
Suzanne is originally from Alexandria, Indiana, but moved to Colorado a few years ago. Alexandria residents gathered downtown Saturday evening to light candles, pray and talk about Suzanne. Yellow ribbons were placed on trees all over the small town by residents in an effort to remind people of her ongoing case.
Suzanne’s brother announced new plans to lead an extensive search effort in Colorado at the end of September and said he hopes for at least 1,000 participants.
“I need boots on the ground. I need to find my little sister,” Andy told Dateline. ”I’m putting forth an effort right now, starting September 24, we are heading out there to search.”
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Andy hopes to gather volunteers from Indiana, Colorado and everywhere in between and said he’s appealing to anyone who can help by boat, 4-wheel-drive or on foot.
Suzanne was reported missing by a neighbor on May 10 after her daughters, who were away on a camping trip, couldn’t reach her. According to Andy, Suzanne’s husband Barry said he left their house around 5 a.m. and went to a landscaping job. Andy says Barry told him that Suzanne left for a bike ride that morning. Andy told Dateline his sister’s bike was recovered from a bridge near her home later that same day.
Andy first heard the news that his sister was missing from their 87-year-old father, Gene Moorman.
“I got a call on Mother’s Day that my little sister was missing,” Andy told Dateline. “I immediately booked a flight for Colorado and started looking.”
As investigators with the Colorado Bureau of Investigation descended on Salida to help the Chaffee County Sheriff’s Department, Andy spent the next few days searching for his sister. He visited the location where he said Suzanne’s bike was found and combed the hills around Salida, but there was no sign of his sister.
One week after Suzanne’s disappearance, her husband released a video on the “Find Suzanne Morphew” Facebook page asking for tips to aid in her safe return.
A BROTHER’S CALL TO ACTION
In the more than three months since Suzanne’s disappearance, Andy said he and his family have waited and respected the work of investigators. He said he hopes to bring the family answers soon, adding that this has been quite difficult for their family, especially their father, who is 87 years old and battling cancer.
“It’s tortuous — not knowing is horrible. We need closure,” said Andy, adding that he wants to bring his sister home before their father leaves this earth. He hopes his upcoming search in late September will bring some answers.
According to a press release on August 11, Chaffee County investigators spent August 10 distributing flyers about the case to mark the three-month anniversary of Suzanne’s disappearance. The release also stated that the investigation into her case is still ongoing.
“This case remains very active, as more than a dozen investigators are aggressively working this case on a daily basis,” Chaffee County Sheriff John Spezze said in a July statement. “And until we determine what happened to Suzanne, we can’t discount any scenario or formally eliminate anyone from suspicion.”
Suzanne’s brother Andy hugged friends and residents on Saturday night and said his most important message was for his little sister.
“Suzanne, we love you and we want to bring you home,” Andy said.
Anyone with information about Suzanne’s case is encouraged to call the dedicated tip line established by the Colorado Bureau of Investigation at (719) 312-7530.