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Monroe County mother missing two years later, KSP with few leads

Published: Sep. 23, 2021 at 2:47 PM CDT
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MONROE COUNTY, Ky. (WBKO) - As a family approaches the two-year anniversary of the disappearance of their loved one, they continue to plead for answers from law enforcement and the public.

Katie Mae Cawthorn, the mother of a three-year-old boy, was last seen on October 1, 2019, in the Bugtussle area of Monroe County. Authorities say she is five feet one inch tall, 150 pounds and has brown hair and brown eyes. She was last seen wearing black pants, a pink shirt, and brown boots.

RELATED: One year later: Few leads as authorities, family search for missing Monroe Co. woman

Meanwhile, with Gabby Petito’s case in the national spotlight, Cawthorn’s father and friend say it’s a reminder that they still don’t have the closure they long for.

“If they put that much effort into other people, there would be a whole lot more found,” said a family friend of Cawthorn, Melissa Bridges.

Petito’s case has triggered families of other missing people to push for justice.

“I would give anything if they would put that much manpower behind finding Katie,” expressed Bridges.

Through tears, Cawthorn’s father, Darrell Cawthorn, says he would do anything to find his daughter.

“Wherever she’s at -- I love her. I won’t ever give up as long as I can draw a breath-- I won’t ever give up on her.

Darrell is no stranger to loss and grief, as he has lost two sons, but he adds that Katie’s unknown whereabouts make this circumstance even more difficult.

“I know what happened. I go to the graveyard and see them and that hurts me, that bothers me a lot, but it’s nothing like Katie Mae-- you don’t know what happened to her,” said Darrell.

Kentucky State Police Post 15 has been investigating the case for two years, but still does not have many prominent leads.

“It’s been devastation for them. They have agonized over, you know, where she might be,” said Bridges.

Post 15 has nine active missing person cases, which includes Cawthorn’s case.

Meanwhile, KSP Post 3 in Bowling Green says they have four active missing person cases. Thirty-one cases opened in the last five years, and all but one have been located.

“I’ve done the best I can. Everything I can think of to be done,” said Darrell. “Her smile and her eyes I guess is what I think about the most.”

While a lot can change in two years, for this family and friends, progress on their loved one’s case remains stagnant. But that reality won’t allow them to lose hope they say, not until answers are brought to light.

“It doesn’t matter what it is the smallest detail that could help maybe locate --- just anything. Somebody has to know something. People don’t just vanish,” said Bridges.

Anyone with information on her whereabouts should call KSP at (270) 384-4796.

There is a Facebook page called ‘Help Find Missing Katie Cawthorn where you can find more photos and information.

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