Jan. 2 will mark 17 years since 11-year-old Mikelle Biggs went missing outside of her Mesa home.
Her sister, Kimber Biggs, now 26, was the last one to see her.
Kimber was only 9 at the time of Mikelle’s disappearance, and Kimber said she doesn’t remember a lot of what went on those few weeks after Mikelle went missing.
“She was riding my bike, and I was walking our dog, and I got cold and tired of waiting for the ice- cream truck that she thought she heard,” Kimber aid. “I went inside and walked back to the house, and she was out there for a minute or two by herself.”
In the few short minutes between when Kimber went into the house and returned to get Mikelle, the older sister had disappeared.
“It’s almost like a Twilight Zone kind of thing. It was like gray and foggy, and all I saw was my bike in the road,” Kimber said.
Kimber said she still feels the weight of her sister’s disappearance nearly 17 years later. She now lives in Mesa with her boyfriend, and stays at home during the day with her 3 year-old son, Tayven.
“It really affected me because I feel like I missed out on my childhood,” Kimber said. “In all honesty, I almost feel selfish for saying that because it’s Mikelle who really missed out on it.”
Detective Stuart Somershoe, who works in the Phoenix police department’s Missing and Unidentified Persons Unit, recently reached out to Kimber for help with the Missing in Arizona Day that took place on Oct. 24.
Families of missing people attended the event at Arizona State University’s West Campus to file new missing persons reports and bring dental and medical records to try and match their family member with one of the unidentified bodies at the medical examiner’s office.
“It’s worse than somebody dying in your family. When somebody dies, we have a ritual. We have a process that we go through as human beings to deal with that,” Somershoe said. “These families are denied that.”
The Biggs family held a funeral for Mikelle on the five-year anniversary of her disappearance, but for Kimber and her family, she said it’s not enough.
“It is really hard. You don’t know for sure. I don’t know exactly who took her. I don’t know what happened to her. I don’t know where her body is,” Kimber said. “I go visit her grave, but I can’t go to her grave and feel like, that she is there. It’s empty.”
Kimber said she doesn’t believe her sister Mikelle is alive, but she wants answers. Kimber said she’s trying to get more involved and spread the word about her sister’s case in the hopes of finding new leads.