McCormick mystery remains active
December 19, 2005
SUMMIT COUNTY – Patricia McCormick turned 63 years old on Monday, but on a day typically reserved for celebration, McCormick’s daughter instead relived the mysterious circumstances surrounding her mother’s disappearance.”It’s grueling,” Kathy McCormick said. “Every day that goes by is just … you get more and more hopeless and I don’t want to be like that.”The Dillon Valley woman has been missing since Nov. 28, when she vanished while making deliveries in her employer’s NAPA truck, which has not been found.Frisco detective Julie Polly is the lead on the investigation, and continues to make the case a priority every day.She thoroughly investigates each tip that comes in, by herself or with the help of local police departments and agencies from around the state.
People have called in to report having seen McCormick or the missing NAPA truck in various parts of the state, including as nearby as Dillon and Idaho Springs. So far none of those tips materialized into solid leads, but the case will remain active, Polly said.”I’m working until I can definitively say this is a good or bad lead. I have a number I’m actively researching. Again, something else could come in that could lead to a whole other avenue,” she said. No substantiated information has directed detectives out of the state, Polly said.The changing weather in the spring could bring some answers, and local police will conduct another search of the county when the snow melts, according to Undersheriff Derek Woodman.”The big question still lays at hand: where’s the truck? Obviously, if something materializes, the truck is found, whatever the case may be, that kicks everything back into gear 100 percent,” Woodman said. On Dec. 1, three days into the local search for McCormick, Woodman said he was confident the truck was not in Summit County.
He said Monday that he stands by his statement, but that there’s always the chance the truck could be in a depression that is now covered with snow.”I think that is such a slight possibility, but it’s something that we have to exhaust,” Woodman said.The more time that passes, the more Kathy McCormick thinks ahead to springtime, as well. She can’t imagine that somebody is holding her mother against her will, or that she is lost somewhere with amnesia because the case has been so well publicized.She does think it’s a possibility that her mother drove off the road into a ravine or that the truck was stolen and the thief left McCormick behind.Until the answers come, Kathy continues to work part-time, although she is seeking full-time employment to help cover her mother’s bills. The Advocates of Victims of Assault paid for counseling sessions, which she said helped her handle the emotional ordeal.
She sent information on her mother’s case to the television show “America’s Most Wanted” in hopes of gaining national publicity, and continues to have friends outside the county plaster flyers around their respective towns.Donations came into play when it was time to pay for McCormick’s December rent. Kathy said she’ll keep her mother’s apartment until she can no longer afford it.”I’m not ready to go pick up her stuff. I go water her plants, you know, maybe it’s just to be closer to her, but I’ll try to keep (the apartment) as long as I can. You know, I really don’t want to pack up her stuff and put it into storage,” Kathy said.Polly encourages anyone who has thought of contacting the police department but hasn’t to make the phone call. The smallest piece of information about McCormick or her habits is valuable to the investigation, she said.”I believe the information is out there,” Polly said.
Polly can be contacted at the Frisco Police Department at (970) 668-3579.Nicole Formosa can be reached at (970) 668-3998 ext. 13625, or at firstname.lastname@example.org