Celia Darlene Barnes

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Above: Barnes, circa 2002

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Vital Statistics at Time of Disappearance

  • Missing Since: September 1, 2002 from Gold Hill, Oregon
  • Classification: Lost/Injured Missing
  • Date of Birth: August 28, 1949
  • Age: 53 years old
  • Height and Weight: 5'2, 110 pounds
  • Distinguishing Characteristics: Caucasian female. Brown hair, blue eyes. Barnes's hair was very short at the time of her disappearance due to chemotherapy treatments. She occasionally wears a wig. She goes by her middle name, Darlene. Barnes wore bifocal glasses with light tan-colored frames when she disappeared. She has a scar on her forehead near her widow's peak, several scars on her back, and a scar behind her right ear. She walks with a limp.
  • Clothing/Jewelry Description: A white tank top, light green serge pants and sneakers. Carrying a green fanny pack.
  • Medical Conditions: Barnes was diagnosed with lymphoma, a cancer that affects the immune system, in January 2002, and she was undergoing chemotherapy treatments at the time of her disappearance. She was not carrying her medication or medical equipment with her when she vanished, and she would have needed them to survive in the woods for an extended period of time. Barnes may become disoriented from the affects of her medicine.
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    Details of Disappearance

    Barnes was last seen hiking near the 6000 block of the right fork of Sardine Creek Road, in the area around the "House of Mystery" in Gold Hill, Oregon on September 1, 2002. She had gone hiking that day with her sister. They separated to look for aluminum cans. They were supposed to rendezvous at Barnes's sister's car, but Barnes never showed up and has never been seen again. She had been reported missing before when she got lost while hiking, but was found safe and was angry at her family for sending out a search party. As a result, this time her family waited 30 hours before informing the authorities.

    Barnes may have been spotted on the day of her disappearance by a man who said she told him she was going back to her sister's car. Another witness might have seen Barnes at the valley of Rogue State Park. Tracker dogs traced her scent to the off-ramp of north Interstate 5. Police believe she walked down Sardine Creek Road to the highway. Two residents of the neighborhood reported having seen her. None of these sightings have been confirmed. A week after Barnes disappeared, a man in Gold Hill found the bronze ski pole she used as a walking stick. He has passed a polygraph and is not considered a suspect in her case.

    Barnes resided in the 100 block of Brookside Boulevard in Merlin, Oregon at the time of her disappearance. She is an experienced hiker and an ex-Marine who served in Vietnam. Her family does not believe she left of her own accord and think she may have been abducted, but little evidence is available as to her fate.

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    Investigating Agency
    If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:
    Jackson County Sheriff's Office
    541-774-6800

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    Source Information
    The Mail Tribune
    Missing Darlene
    NamUs
    Jackson County Online

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    Updated 1 time since October 12, 2004.

    Last updated July 14, 2013; date of birth added.

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