Tammy Lynn Akers

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Top Row and Bottom Left and Center: Tammy, circa 1977;
Bottom Right: Age-progression to age 50 (circa 2012)

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Vital Statistics at Time of Disappearance

  • Missing Since: February 7, 1977 from Roanoke, Virginia
  • Classification: Endangered Missing
  • Date Of Birth: June 28, 1962
  • Age: 14 years old
  • Height and Weight: 5'4, 82 pounds
  • Distinguishing Characteristics: Caucasian female. Red hair, blue eyes. Tammy has a protruding navel and a black-colored mark on her cheek. Her earlobes are scarred.
  • Clothing/Jewelry Description: A green short-sleeved sweater, jeans, suede shoes and a suede jacket.
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    Details of Disappearance

    Tammy and her friend, Angela Rader, were dropped off at William Ruffner Junior High School by one of the girls' relatives on February 7, 1977 in Roanoke, Virginia. The girls did not attend classes that day and were last seen hitchhiking in the city. Neither girl has been heard from again.

    Tammy is described by her family as a spoiled child. She began to get into trouble at age twelve and had run away with Angela several times before their disappearances in 1977. The police originally did not take their disappearances seriously as a result. Several months after their disappearances, one of the girls's mothers got a phone call from someone saying she was her daughter and was all right. Tammy and Angela were also allegedly seen in a grocery store in the months after they vanished but that sighting was never confirmed.

    The girls' mothers told authorities that Tammy and Angela worked for a friend of their families, Earl Conrad Bramblett, in 1977. A photo of Bramblett is posted below this case summary. Tammy's mother stated that her daughter was friends with Bramblett and his wife at the time, frequently spending time at their home. He did not seem to have any adult friends, just children. Investigators believe that Bramblett may have been involved in Tammy and Angela's disappearances. He reportedly told friends at a party in 1980 that he wished he did not "hurt Tammy" back in 1977.

    Bramblett was charged with molesting a ten-year-old girl in 1984 but acquitted. Tammy's older sister says he molested her when she was twelve years old and she believes he molested Tammy as well. Bramblett convicted of murdering a Virginia family of four, Blaine and Teresa Hodges and their two children, in 1994 and sentenced to death. He was living with the Hodgeses at the time of their homicides. A jailhouse informant told police that Bramblett had told him that he killed the Hodges family after being caught molesting one of the children. The informant later recanted his statements but Bramblett was executed in April 2003, still maintaining his innocence. It's worth noting that Bramblett has many supporters (particularly online) who believe he was wrongly accused. The same people maintain that both Tammy and Angela ran away from Roanoke voluntarily in 1977.

    Eight months after Bramblett was sent to death row, authorities dug up the yard of the house he had been living in when Tammy and Angela disappeared. They found nothing and the residence's current owners did not give them permission to search inside the house, so they never had the opportunity to look in the basement where they believe Tammy and Angela may be buried.

    Bramblett always maintained his innocence in the missing girls' cases. He said he was drunk when he made the statement about "hurting Tammy" in 1980 and his comment was misinterpreted. He said he believes Tammy died in a bonfire in central Florida in 1980 and the police know about it and have tried to cover it up. There is no evidence to support Bramblett's theory, however.

    Authorities never charged Bramblett in connection with the girls' disappearances. They have taken blood samples from the girls' mothers so if their bodies are found and their family members are all dead, the bodies can still be identified from DNA. Angela's mother has since died; she believed her daughter was still alive. Tammy's family believes she is deceased and Bramblett was connected to her disappearance.

    Tammy's and Angela's cases remain open and unsolved.

    Bramblett
    Above: Earl Bramblett

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    Investigating Agency
    If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:
    Roanoke City Police Department
    540-853-5305

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    Source Information
    Child Protection Education Of America
    The Roanoke Times
    WDBJ-7
    The National Center For Missing and Exploited Children
    Office of the Clark County Prosecuting Attorney
    The Doe Network
    Facebook Page for Tammy Akers

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    Updated 5 times since October 12, 2004.

    Last updated September 2, 2015; three pictures added.

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