Ricky Jean Bryant

1 AP
Left: Bryant, circa 1949;
Right: Age-progression to age 66 (circa 2011)

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Vital Statistics at Time of Disappearance

  • Missing Since: December 19, 1949 from Mauston, Wisconsin
  • Classification: Endangered Missing
  • Date Of Birth: November 9, 1945
  • Age: 4 years old
  • Height and Weight: 3'4, 40 pounds
  • Distinguishing Characteristics: Caucasian female. Blonde hair, hazel eyes. Bryant's nickname is Jeannie.
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    Details of Disappearance

    Bryant was last seen in Mauston, Wisconsin on December 19, 1949. Her parents were out and her grandparents were watching her and two of her siblings; a third child was in school. Sometime during the day, a fire broke out at the Bryant house.

    Bryant's five-year-old brother stated that they were standing in the yard together watching the fire when a woman drove up in an expensive-looking car and urged him to get help. She directed him to a house down the road, although there was another residence close by. When Bryant's brother returned, both his sister and the unidentified woman were gone. Bryant's grandmother, however, contradicted her grandson's version of events. She said she took Bryant's brother and sister outside when the fire started, went into the house to find Bryant and called for her several times without result.

    Most authorities believe Bryant died in the fire that consumed her house. Some possible bone fragments were sent to a state laboratory for analysis, but they were not identified as hers. Bryant's siblings believe she may have been hidden by other family members and is possibly still alive. They think Bryant was possibly conceived out of wedlock and the fire was set as a diversion so someone could take Bryant away from her home and to the care of her biological father. A Minnesota woman had her DNA tested against the Bryant family's in 2006, but she was not Bryant.

    It was at her siblings' request that authorities reopened the investigation into Bryant's disappearance over fifty years after she vanished. Her case remains unsolved.

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    Investigating Agency
    If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:
    Juneau County Sheriff's Department
    608-847-5649

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    Source Information
    The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children
    The Baraboo News Republic
    The Wisconsin State Journal

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    Updated 5 times since October 12, 2004.

    Last updated March 3, 2012; age-progression updated.

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