It took 46 years, but Sandra Ann Stiver was finally reunited with her family this week.
Berks County Coroner Dennis Hess presented the cremated remains of Stiver, who was murdered after she fled home at the age of 14, to her mother and two of her siblings at a news conference in Reading, Pennsylvania, Monday.
Sandy and her sister-in-law Martha Stiver, 17, disappeared in 1968 after running away from home in Philadelphia.
Sandy’s body was found in a patch of poison ivy in Berks County, Pennsylvania, on Aug. 22, 1968. She’d been shot five times. Martha’s remains were found the following April about five miles away, in French Creek State Park. Authorities could not determine a cause of death but said she was murdered.
“If there’s anyone out there with any kind of information from 1968, when these murders took place … please, it’s time to have a conscience and it’s time to fess up,” Hess said, according to the Associated Press.
Both girls were buried as Jane Does in adjoining, unmarked graves in a potter’s field outside Reading, about 60 miles northwest of Philadelphia.
Sandy’s family later moved to Ohio but said they never stopped wondering what happened to her. Her sister, Hazel, found information about the “Berks County Jane Does” on The Doe Network, a website run by a group of amateur sleuths who try to match bodies to unsolved cases.
In October, authorities exhumed the bodies and obtained DNA samples. The matches came back last month.
Sandy’s mother Elizabeth, now 87, choked back tears and held a tissue over her mouth as Hess gave her a metal urn with her daughter’s ashes Monday.
“We’re sad and we’re hurt and we’re mad,” Hazel said. “We want to know who did it.”
The Stivers plan to bury Sandy in Ohio. Martha Stiver’s remains will be shipped back to her family in Kansas, Hess said, according to the Philadelphia Daily News.
Tom, her widower, urged anyone with information about the homicides to call police, the Daily News reported.
“Somebody out there has to know something,” he said. “They gotta come forward.”