Justice denied and mystery remains for 35 years.

Alicia Rust
6 min readMar 2, 2023

Sources consulted follow this article.

Friends Susan Smalley and Stacie Madison were last seen near the end of Spring Break March 19, 1988. They were students at Newman Smith High School in Carrollton, TX: Stacie a senior, Susan a junior. They were never seen again after that night. No bodies ever found, no suspects ever charged.

This is a cold case that haunts many of us, not only their families.

During this time, I was a seventh grader at Blalack Middle School along with one of Stacie’s sisters. My older brother was a junior at Newman Smith. The news of Susan and Stacie’s disappearance shook everyone. They were one of us: Carrolltonites, Newman Smith Trojans. They had plans and aspirations as we all did, and they were working toward their goals. Stacie, in fact, took her SATs just that morning.

Spring Break was coming to a close.

Stacie and Susan had plans together on that last night of freedom from academics, and Stacie would sleep over at Susan’s home. The timeline of their last night changes a bit depending upon the source, but they did visit friends at an apartment in Arlington, TX (28 miles from Carrollton) at approximately 10:00 pm. They also made it back to Susan’s home by midnight for Stacie’s curfew. As is not uncommon with teenagers, they slipped out of the house again later. They were seen between 12:30 and 1:00 am in the parking lot of the Steak and Ale restaurant in Addison, TX, where Susan worked as a hostess. After Susan’s visit with a coworker, the mystery begins.

Where Susan worked, photo from Facebook group

In the first few days of their disappearance, fear grew within the family and within the halls of Newman Smith High School. With Stacie’s sister being my classmate, I was heartbroken for her. Susan and Stacie were reported missing, and then Stacie’s 1967 Mustang was found Tuesday the 22nd in a parking lot off Webb Chapel Road and Forest Lane in Dallas County. Forest Lane at the time was a common cruise strip. Although their purses were not in the car, other personal items were, including a portable…



Alicia Rust

Writer. Lover of dark chocolate, coffee, tea, & being me. I’m an anxiety-ridden, chronic depression survivor... www.lifesodaily.com