Home » Shonna Wesley, 16: Teen Mom Vanishes 1981, Daughter Found Abandoned
At 14-years-old, Shonna Wesley became a mother. The details involving her home life or the father of her child remain secrets only privy to those involved, loved ones, and the authorities. It has been over 40 years since anyone has seen or heard from the young teen—who, in 1981, was a 16-year-old mother to a two-year-old daughter, Shandonder. On the day Shonna went missing, she and Shandonder reportedly went to the store to meet up with Shonna’s boyfriend in Dallas, Texas. However, what happened to Shonna after this encounter has plagued investigators for decades.
What Were Shonna’s Last Known Movements?
Little has been shared about the last movements of Shonna Wesley, but that same day, little Shandonder was located in the South Oak Cliff apartment complex by herself. The two-year-old was only wearing a diaper and a shirt, and due to the circumstances, authorities weren’t immediately able to identify the child. Shandonder would spend a week in foster care before her grandmother, Mary Wesley, Shonna’s mother, would claim her. The reunion came after a newspaper ran a photo of the little girl.
Reports also stated that Shonna’s boyfriend, who hasn’t been named publicly, called Mary to tell her that the teen disappeared. It is unclear when this alleged phone call was made, but it is reported that the boyfriend told Mary that Shonna was gone and had taken much of her clothing.
A Daughter Continues Searching For Her Mother
Sadly, Shonna’s mother passed away in 2002 without learning of her daughter’s fate, but 34 years after Shonna went missing, Shandonder sat down with KHOU 11 News to revisit one of the greatest mysteries to befall her family.
She told the outlet that of all her possessions, she only had one photo of her mother. She doesn’t hold tight to any memories, considering that Shandonder, who has kids of her own, doesn’t remember her mother. According to her interview, she doesn’t even know much about Shonna as a person. It took months of convincing, but in 2015, Shandonder got the Dallas Police Department to take her DNA sample so they would have it on file in case of any developments in her mother’s investigation. They reportedly re-opened the case that year.
“It makes me feel good that I’m not going at it alone anymore,” she said. “Somebody cares besides me.” She also offered additional information about the disappearance. “We were said to be on our way to the store to meet with her boyfriend at the time and never returned.” Shandonder added that she heard it was a man and a woman who dropped them off, but that hasn’t been confirmed.
She also stated that Mary would tell her that Shonna Wesley would have never abandoned her. “She would say things like, ‘Your mother loved you. She would never leave you.’ She wanted me to know that.” However, Mary didn’t say much about her daughter or Shonna’s disappearance.
Shandonder Comes To Her Own Conclusions
Meanwhile, Shandonder did admit that she has grown suspicious of her mother’s boyfriend, but the status of the renewed investigation remains unknown. It is also unclear if this boyfriend is a suspect or a person of interest.
“I know that I can’t grow old not trying,” she said. “I mean, if I find nothing, then I find nothing. But I at least want to try. Or if she is out there, I least want her to see that I’m reaching out to her, and maybe she’ll reach out to me. If, for any reason, there was a tragedy and she is deceased, I would like to know that, too. Again: Either way is closure for me.”
Shonna Wesley: What To Know
At the time of her disappearance, Shonna Wesley stood 5 feet 5 inches tall and weighed 130 pounds. She had black/dark brown hair and brown eyes. She was last seen wearing a T-shirt with blue jeans. Her middle name is “Dannette” or “Danette,” and she has a scar on her head. Her dental records and fingerprints are not on file, but her DNA has been recorded.
Anyone with information about this case is urged to contact the Dallas Police Department at (214) 671-4268 or their local authorities. The agency case number is 236551-M.
Please share this story about Shonna Wesley to help reignite interest in her missing person case. She is our sister, and her life matters.[via][via][via][via]
Help Publicize This Case:
Journalist. Activist. Storyteller. •OurBlackGirls.com •@OurBlackGirls on IG, Twitter, Facebook, TikTok, Spotify Podcasts, Apple Podcasts, & Anchor FM