Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Parental abduction wisdom, pt 6: The little girl in the blue dress

By Sean Cruz

Portland, Oregon--

How long does a father's love last? MSNBC’s Dateline asked the question….

When Richard Pulsifer arrived to see his children, 6-year-old Richard, Jr. and 3-year-old Michelle, on a summer day in 1969, he found that the house where his former wife and her new boyfriend had been living was empty.

He went to the authorities, to law enforcement but was rebuffed at every turn. No one was willing to take his children’s disappearance seriously.

The police wouldn’t take a missing persons report, because the children were presumed to be with their mother, who had full custody. She had the right to do whatever she wanted to do with the children.

A recent story on MSNBC’s Dateline tells this tragic story of a parental kidnapping, of a father’s broken heart, of a little girl who fell through the cracks in the worst possible way….

“(MSNBC): Even though Donna had full custody of the kids, Dick had never imagined that his ex-wife and her boyfriend could just take the kids and vanish without his permission. He immediately complained to local authorities.

“Dick Pulsifer: ‘I went to the social services. Told them-- I said, "They can't do that. It's illegal." And they said, "Well, yes, she can. She's got full custody; she can do what she wants."

“(MSNBC): He was helpless -- and heart sick. Where were they? It would be months, and he'd receive another blow -- news that his wife and son were accounted for, but his daughter, Michelle, was not. Somehow, Michelle was gone.”

Michelle had vanished from the face of the earth.

All that was left was a handful of photographs, memories, and a father’s love.

He began a search for his little girl that would take years, decades, lifetimes….

“(MSNBC) John Larson: ’What is life like when you have to wonder and look at every little girl you see?’

Dick Pulsifer: ‘You're always seeing that child somewhere, walking through a crowd. Wow, that could have been her, you know.’

(MSNBC) John Larson: ‘And this isn't like once a year.’

Dick Pulsifer: ‘No, it's all the time.’”

Nearly forty years after Michelle vanished, the police finally took the case of the missing little girl seriously enough to open an investigation.

See the story of Michelle Pulsifer, here:


Coming next:

Parental abduction wisdom, pt 7: Comments on “The little girl in the blue dress”


Sean Cruz writes

Parental Abduction Law at

Oregon’s Aaron’s Law: Stop Parental Abductions at

Blogolitical Sean at


Take Root link: Survivors of parental and family abductions speak out

Link to Find the Children: Become aware; Save a child’s life

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