Sunday, May 31, 2009

Son finds comfort in charges for 1992 killing of his mother in Pike County

(P-D)By Joel Currier

Sixteen years after his mother's mysterious disappearance, Matt Higginbotham decided it was finally time to burn some of the things she left behind.

Higginbotham's roaring backyard bonfire last June swallowed up his mother's old radio and several meticulously detailed day planners he had stored for years, hoping she would come home.

"I remember saying, 'Mom, I'm sorry,'" said Higginbotham, 41, of Dardenne Prairie. "We were never going to find anything."

Four months later, his mother's skeleton, her heart-shaped pendant and her .38-caliber revolver were found in an abandoned septic tank on a farm in Pike County.

Betty Ann Howery of St. Charles was 44 when she vanished on Feb. 20, 1992. That night, police say, she had accompanied her husband to their farm about six miles north of Elsberry, near the Mississippi River.

Higginbotham reported her missing, telling police she never would have left without an explanation.

"It just didn't make sense," Higginbotham said. "None of it added up."

Higginbotham's suspicion rang true earlier this month when Howery's ex-husband, Douglas J. Howery Sr., 57, of Springfield, Mo., was charged with her murder.

the rest of the St. Louis Post articles:

Our Comments:
So glad this man finally got answers to his Mother's disappearance. What was wrong with the new step Mom? Why would she blindly accept that the old wife disappeared and not ask any questions?


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