PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Exactly 30 years ago today, a Portland woman vanished without a trace. Now, her family is coming together to remember her and continue the search for answers.
Loved ones of Tanya Anderson-Jackson have been tormented with the unknown of what happened to her.
“It hurts that we have to be there under this circumstance. I just want answers, some kind of closure,” said Elijah Jackson, Anderson-Jackson’s son.
On April 22, 1992, the 31-year-old — who was pregnant at the time — left her home near Killingsworth and 16th. She was just going feet away to the store at the corner.
“Tanya left to go to the store which was on Killingsworth right there. She just vanished and never came back,” said Danielle Raines, Anderson-Jackson’s sister. “Back in the day, a lot of people didn’t like to come out and say what happened if they had seen something.”
Family says the only lead was a white van parked by the store that she was seen getting into. There hasn’t been any word or clues since.
“One thing she always did was make sure she came home to her son,” said Raines. “When she came up missing on this day, 30 years ago, his birthday is on May 26th so when she didn’t show up, we knew something was wrong.”
Her son, Elijah, was just 9 years old at the time. While he now has kids of his own, including a daughter named Tanya, the endless questions and lack of closure make it hard to heal.
“What happened?” asked Jackson. “I know it’s not like her to just disappear and leave me, leave her family.”
Known for her sense of humor and love of family, her siblings say the years of not knowing what happened have been painful.
“We missed each other through those summer months and all of a sudden, she was gone,” said Michael Jackson, Anderson-Jackson’s brother.
On Friday, Anderson-Jackson’s family came together to mark the 30th anniversary of her disappearance. Starting with a balloon release at 4:22 p.m. outside of the spot she was last seen, they walked to a nearby park while sharing stories and memories of her.
“We are certainly looking and praying for this family as a whole,” said Pastor Greg Raines, Anderson-Jackson’s brother-in-law. “This has been a hardship on the entire family and we are with them in support and our prayers.”
They remain hopeful someone will come forward with the answer they’ve sought for so long. Until then, they don’t plan to give up the search anytime soon.
“I just miss my little sister,” said Torin Anderson, Anderson-Jackson’s brother. “I hope that somebody sees, somewhere, and will stand up and do what’s right.”
PPB says Anderson-Jackson remains an active missing person case, but there’s been no updates or recent developments. They’re asking anyone with information to contact them, even anonymously.