Raylene Susan Helsley

Left: Raylene circa 1983 Right: Age Progressed to age 37

Vital Statistics at Time of Disappearance

Missing Since: January 5, 1983 from Marion, Union Parish, Louisiana

Classification: Non-Family Abduction

Date Of Birth: October 19, 1970

Age: 12 years old

Height and Weight: 4’11”; 90 pounds

Distinguishing Characteristics: White Female, Blonde hair, Blue eyes, Raylene has a blue colored pencil mark that runs from the base of her nose to her upper lip, she has a heart shaped birth mark on the base of her skull on the rear of her neck

Clothing/Jewelry Description: A long sleeved button down shirt with purple flowers, a pair of Levi’s jeans and boots

Circumstances of Disappearance

Raylene Helsley was last seen in Marion, Louisiana on January 5th 1983. On that day, her younger sister, Candace claimed that their father, Raymond Helsley Jr., had severely abused Raylene during that morning. He reportedly hit her with the piece of a PVC pipe and a silver 14 inch pipe wrench.

She stated that he beat Raylene with the wrench so hard that it broke and Candace heard Raylene scream. When Candace left fro school, she saw that Raylene was laying on the coach and not moving. When she returned home in the afternoon, Raylene was gone and had disappeared from the home.

Raymond initially claimed that he had left Raylene at the home for approximately 1 hour. He also stated he believed that she had runaway. He stated that when he came back to the home, Raylene has disappeared. Raylene has never been seen or heard from again.

Raymond was charged with Cruelty to a juvenile in relation to the beating against Raylene that day. When authorities searched the home, they found the broken pipe wrench and a pillow case that appeared to be covered in human blood. The blood could not be positively identified as belonging to Raylene at the time.

Candace testified against Raymond and he was convicted of the charges in August of 1983. He was sentenced to a decade in prison. He was also convicted of a charge that involved unlawful transportation of illegal explosives. He has a criminal record for traffic offenses, breaking and entering, and another instance where he committed child abuse against Raylene.

Raymond failed two polygraph exams in relation to her disappearance. Authorities have come to the possible conclusion that Raylene was murdered that day and that Raymond buried her body about 1 1/2 miles away from the trailer home. There was no evidence available to charge him at the time.

Raylene’ disappearance remains unsolved and due to conflicting factors in the case, the case continues to be listed as that of a non family abduction.

Investigating Agency

If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:

Union Parrish Sheriffs Department 318-368-3124

NCMEC Number: 601681

Source Information:

The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children

The Charley Project

The Doe Network

NamUs