Daughter of missing woman: 'I have a hole in my heart'

The disappearance of 76-year-old Jean Stokes on Oct. 11 has her family desperate for answers.

NEW ORLEANS - A family in New Orleans East wants nothing more than to find a loved one this holiday season.

"It's hard on us, it's so very hard on us," Darlene Veal said.

It's been close to seven weeks since Veal heard from her mom.

"Everybody knows my mom. She did arts and crafts, she worked in her yard," Veal said. 

Veal's mother is 76-year-old Jean Stokes, a retired school cafeteria worker. She was last seen October 11th, and her disappearance has left her family desperate for answers.

"Constantly scanning, constantly looking my rearview mirror," Veal explained, of how she's looking for clues while driving.

Veal flew her October 13th from Texas.  That morning when she came to her mom's house on Good Drive, she found her car was missing and immediately began searching.  

"My family is broken. I hurt every day, I cry everyday. I have a hole in my heart," Veal said. 

Stokes car was found near Dwyer Road, and A Street, four miles away from her home, nearly two weeks after she disappeared. The discovery of the car and part of the investigation at the house led investigators to suspect foul play.

"We want our mama back, she didn't deserve this. You don't do this to your elderly people you take care of them," Veal said.

Search crews had been out in force early on, but now it's just family and friends.  

"When we found the car we thought she would be in the car, but unfortunately that's not the case," Janice Brown, a longtime family friend said.

Stokes' family fears the worst. They are pleading with the public to help bring her home with $5,000 cash reward.

"Whatever part of her that's out there, we want it, we want it back," Veal said. 

Until Jean Stokes is found, her daughter Darlene Veal says she cannot rest. Anyone with information is urged to call Crimestoppers at 822-1111.

© 2017 WWL-TV


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