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A Mom in Iowa Went Out to Play with her Band in Iowa Over 40 years ago. She Hasn't Been Seen Since.

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Source: Iowa Department of Public Safety; Unsplash

Jun. 24 2024, Published 3:02 p.m. ET

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In 1982, an Iowa woman was seen performing with a band. She hasn’t been seen since.

Over 40 years later, her family still hopes for answers and closure.

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On Sep. 11, 1982, tennis star Chris Evert won her sixth and final U.S. title after defeating Hana Mandikova in two straight sets. That same day, the decidedly less famous Denise Fraley (née Stark) performed with her husband in a band at a private event in Cedar Rapids.

The following day, Fraley disappeared.

According to 98.1 KHAK, Fraley was reported missing by her mother, Nadine Grace Broussard, 36 days after vanishing and in the wake of family's desperate but unsuccessful searches. After Broussard's request to speak with her daughter, David Fraley reportedly hung up on Broussard. As a result, she called the Cedar Rapids police to report her daughter's disappearance.

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David Fraley, who performed with his wife the last night she was seen alive, allegedly claimed she had packed up her belongings and left their home with thousands of dollars in drug money. He believed the mafia was looking for her and why she had remained out of reach from everyone, according to the report.

David Fraley allegedly also told Broussard the mafia would not be happy if they started snooping around and advised them to stay away from Cedar Rapids, police said. It worked for a time.

However, six months later, Broussard and another daughter had enough and visited Cedar Rapids. They hired a private investigator for the sole purpose of gathering enough evidence to convince the Cedar Rapids Police Department to re-open Denise Fraley’s disappearance.

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Subsequently, Broussard made an extra effort to secure the sole custody of Fraley’s daughter and her granddaughter. They lost, and David Fraley reportedly successfully got a divorce from Denise Fraley in absentia.

The victim was described as the valedictorian of her high school in Missouri. She was 30 years old at the time of her disappearance.

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According to her obituary, Broussard died in 2013 believing her daughter was dead.

The case remains one of Iowa’s longest unsolved cold cases. No arrest had been made to date and nobody knows what happened to the missing woman.

Anyone with information about the case is urged to contact the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation at (515) 725-6036.

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