Police sketches of “Blue Earth Jane Doe,” who was discovered to be Michelle Busha. Credit: Minnesota Department of Public Safety

In 1980, 18-year-old Michelle Busha left home and never returned. It’s every family’s worst nightmare and it’s a circumstance so tragic that it touched a complete stranger thousands of miles away.

Reporter Michael Montgomery meets two women who didn’t know each other, but each had a deep connection to the young woman who disappeared 35 years ago.

Solving the case was bittersweet. Both women found the answers they were seeking, but one had to face the reality of her sister’s chilling death.

DIG DEEPER

Michael Montgomery

Michael Montgomery is a senior reporter and producer for Reveal. He has led collaborations with the Associated Press, the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, Frontline, KQED and others.

Previously, Montgomery was a senior reporter at American Public Media, a special correspondent for the BBC and an associate producer with CBS News. He began his career in eastern Europe, covering the fall of communism and wars in former Yugoslavia for the Daily Telegraph and Los Angeles Times. His investigations into human rights abuses in the Balkans led to the arrest and conviction of Serbian and Albanian paramilitaries and creation of a new war crimes court based in The Hague. Montgomery’s honors include Murrow, Peabody, IRE, duPont, Third Coast and Overseas Press Club awards. He is based in Reveal’s Emeryville, California, office.