Misty Copsey disappeared at 14 years old after leaving the Puyallup fairgrounds on September 27, 1992. Police were unable to determine what happened to her after she missed her bus ride back to Spanaway.
Yesterday, the Washington State Patrol (WSP) unveiled its newest Homeward Bound semi-trailer featuring photos of Misty in an attempt to increase exposure to her case.
The semi-trailer features photos of Ms. Copsey as she appeared in 1992 and a rendering of her possible appearance 27 years later.
The Homeward Bound program is administered by the WSP Missing and Unidentified Persons Unit. The program uses the high visibility of commercial vehicles to increase awareness surrounding missing individuals in hopes of obtaining leads regarding possible whereabouts from the public. According to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, 1 out of 6 children are recovered due to the public viewing a picture. Since this program was established, three children featured on trucks have been recovered.
The project was spearheaded by Trooper Renee Padgett in 2005. The back of the new Homeward Bound trailers will also feature a remembrance to Trooper Padgett, who recently lost a years-long battle with cancer. Her work and dedication to the program helped reunite many families.
The original trucking company that worked with Trooper Padgett eventually moved locations, halting the program for a year. This January, Kam-Way Transportation stepped forward and the program was reestablished.
“Our company is grateful for the opportunity to give back to our community,” said Kam-Way CEO Kam Sihota. “We are privileged to be able to help families with these extraordinarily challenging situations.”
Misty Copsey is the second child featured in the newly reestablished program. The first child to be featured was Teekah Lewis, a 2-year-old Tacoma girl who vanished January 23, 1999, while her family bowled nearby.
“This program is a testament to the tireless work of the Washington State Patrol, local law enforcement agencies, communities, and families whose hope stays strong,” said Washington State Patrol Chief John R. Batiste. “Trooper Renee Padgett’s legacy as a trooper and as a person will always include this project that has made such a powerful impact.”
Anybody with information on what happened to Misty Copsey, Teekah Lewis, or any other missing person is asked to call 1-800-THE-LOST (1-800-843-5678).