Posted by: anniewilson | September 14, 2008

Mary Ann Mergel

Last night I watched Cold Case Files. If you’ve never seen that show, it’s all about telling the stories of cold case murders that have been solved. Then they had a show on about murders that have never been solved. Some of those files have spent decades on shelves without so much as a thought given to them. There may be an old cop or two who still remember “the one that got away” and some files are actually sticking out of hundreds or thousands of other cold case files. In that case, a few cops who work specifically on cold cases might take a stab at it.

Of course, every moment passed is another opportunity for more evidence to be destroyed, degraded or just plain wiped away. They say that the chances of catching the murderer drops dramatically after the first 48 hours. Can you imagine what the odds are of not only catching, but actually convicting the murderer after years have gone by? Such a daunting task, I, too, would dread taking on. But my father taught me young how to handle a daunting task. You simply start at the beginning and go one step at a time. Before you know it, that task is behind you.

I don’t think that there’s a specific time table upon which a cold case rests, I’m sure that each situation warrants it’s own consideration. But there has to come a time when the police begin to search out more current dangers to society. Years go by and slowly the police department itself changes so that little is left of the original group who investigated the case during that first 48 hours.

At some point, the only hope that most murder victims have is their family. And if the family doesn’t care, there’s pretty much no hope for the victim to have the very last piece of dignity available to them…the justice that even the least amongst us deserves.

Someone in my family disappeared a few years ago and she seems to have been relegated to the cold case files. If you were to try to get information on the investigation you would think it was in the “Don’t tell the family anything” file because there doesn’t seem to be much that I can do except let the police know that Mary Ann Mergel’s family is still out here, waiting for them to find her, bring her back to us and then lock up her killer and throw away the key.

If you were to close your eyes and think about what would happen if you were to disappear of the face of the Earth, never to be seen again. Millions and millions of us live with very little fanfare or pomp. The evening news might mention our disappearance for a few days or so, but soon another story will knock you off of the news and out of the minds of the people who might remember you, but only as “That woman from Chatsworth who they never did find.” Imagine being murdered while your killer goes on to live his or her life as though they had tossed a cigarette out the car window. It’s a sad thought indeed.

Would anyone look for you after the police give up? Would you search for the killer of a loved one? I think that most of us would.

My aunt has been missing for years and her son has always been the main “person of interest” in her disappearance. Today finds him a fugitive from justice and he is out there somewhere.

Mary Ann’s sister is the one in my family who taught me most what the word family means. It implies an obligation, family is the place to which, if you have to go, they have to take you. In a great big Irish family such as mine, there are far too many cousins for this case to go softly into some hideous night haunted by the silent cries of those who seek justice without a map to follow. All it took was for one of us to start talking out loud about our thoughts on the topic of Aunt Mary Ann and then others followed suit and we’re developing a clearinghouse for information regarding my aunt, her son and anything else that might stir the police into a bit of action. We have finally begun to have hope and we’d like to pass that hope onto the Georgia Bureau of Investigations and the Barrow County Police Department.

We are a force and the more we spread the word to other friends and family members, the stronger we become. We hail from all walks of life, we’re housewifes, nurses and attorneys. We each bring our own experiences and suggestions to the table when we discuss our aunt. We WILL catch her killer or we will die trying.

We are the family of Mary Ann Mergel.



  1. is he charged with any crime- anything? is he wanted by the police? if he is, i can tell you where he is, but i must remian anonynmous

  2. Yes, he IS charged with a crime. You can remain anonymous with my thanks. Email me at

    You would be doing a very good thing and he would never know, you have my word. You don’t even have to tell ME who you are. If you’d like, you can leave another anonymous comment and I won’t approve it, I’ll simply get the info and delete the comment.

    That way you can be sure of your privacy.

    I would protect you at all costs.

  3. Oh, yes, he is wanted in the state of Georgia.

  4. hes in the monmouth county jail new jersey.

  5. Thanks…apparently Gogia doesn’t care enough to want a murderer back. Ain’t that a bitch?

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