Details of Disappearance
Blackburn was last seen in Indianapolis, Indiana on May 29, 1983. She left her parents' home and never returned. On July 17, she called a friend from a truck stop in Arkansas and said she was returning to Indiana. It's unclear whether she ever arrived there; she has never been heard from again.
Blackburn's life prior to her disappearance was very troubled. She had been arrested for drug- and alcohol-related offenses as well as theft, disorderly conduct, trespassing and prostitution, and had been treated for advanced venereal disease. Her last arrest was for prostitution, on April 4. She liked to frequent truck stops and would use CB (citizens band) radio to contact drivers. She handed out business cards giving her occupation as "public relations."
She had left home before for extended time periods, but she'd never been gone for this long. She told her mother, "If you don't hear from me before or on Daddy's birthday, something's wrong." On her father's birthday on October 23, 1983, all of Blackburn's five siblings called him, but she did not.
After Blackburn's disappearance, there were rumors that she had died of cancer in a Wisconsin hospital. The stories could not be confirmed and she had shown no indications of having cancer prior to her disappearance. Her parents have died in the years since her disappearance, but her siblings are still alive and hope for answers in her case.