South Dakota investigators are closer than ever to figuring out why Sherri Miller and Pam Jackson disappeared in 1971.
Now that investigators have finished processing the scene where a car was discovered Monday, they're waiting on tests and we'll soon know if what they found will solve a mystery that has been haunting the families for decades.
The car has been found and the license plate confirmed. Now authorities, family members and South Dakotans who have been captivated by the cold case wait once again.
Wait for the evidence that has been collected over the last few days to be analyzed. Wait for the skeletal remains that were found inside the car to undergo an autopsy. Wait to see if all this information can provide an answer as to why Miller and Jackson disappeared on their way to a gravel pit around 9 p.m. on May 29, 1971.
The National Missing and Unidentified Persons database says Miller and Jackson were on their way to the gravel pit for a party and had stopped at a church near the Spink exit to talk to some boys and ask them for directions. They started following the boys' car to the party but at one point, when the boys looked back in the rear-view mirror, the girls had vanished.
The license plate found on the car Monday just a half mile from that gravel pit matches the one on file in the National Missing Persons Database.
For years, gravel pits in South Dakota have been searched and researched without uncovering any evidence.
In 2004, the massive search at the Lykken farm just a few miles away from the Union County gravel pit didn't offer many leads. And even after the South Dakota Attorney General's Office charged David Lykken in 2007, those charges were later dropped after it was discovered that prison snitch Aloysius Black Crow lied about the case.
Now, one of South Dakota's most famous unsolved mysteries is in the hands of forensic analysts who are being asked to answer all those questions that so many have had for so many years.
It's unclear how long the analysis on the items collected could take. It could be weeks or it could take several months.