Marni Kagan went for a walk October 14th in Pembroke Pines and never came home. Her family is asking for help.
"I don't know if she's in a ditch, or if she's fine,” says her distraught mother, Sherry Kagan. “I have to know."
The pain of a mother whose daughter has vanished is moving and compelling.
“We need to find her. It's really very simple. We need to find her.”
Marni is 39 years old. Her family describes her as full of life and love.
“I could just say that I love my sister. Anybody could say that about their sister. But my sister is about love,” says Marni’s younger brother Larry Kagan. “So, to describe my sister, I can do it in one word. And that's ‘love’."
But bi-polar disorder and anorexia have increasingly taken over her troubled life, her family concedes. She’s unable to work, to fully function. She made bad decisions, her mother says, and became eratic.
Marni Kagan kept a bedroom at her parents home. But she had recently been staying next door at her grandmother's home. More than a week ago, after a mild scolding from her grandmother about her eating disorder, Marni went for a walk as she did so often, and no one has seen her since.
Her mother says her medical condition and emotional issues make her the perfect victim: “A victim before she ever walked out the door."
There’s no indication anyone broke in to remove her from the house, and the family says nothing seems missing.
"She doesn't have anything with her,” says her brother. “She doesn't have a phone with her. She doesn't have her ID with her. She has nothing. Which is scary."
The family must now face the wrenching question: Was she abducted while walking in this family-friendly area of Pembroke Pines?
"Of course, the thought has crossed our minds,” he says. “And this is the first time I am verbalizing it. Some things are just a little too painful to talk about."
They thumb through photos of Marni on the coffee table in the living room. There is extraordinary emotion in the air.
“We have those memories, you know, of Christmas or Hanukah mornings of unwrapping gifts and making a mess,” Larry says. “Or at least once a birthday cake has landed in somebody's face.”
He begins to tear up.
“All your viewers who have siblings have those memories. So, to have that person gone and no explanation as to where they may be or what may have or will happen to them is horrifying.”
He turns to look directly into the TV camera recording his words and speak directly to viewers who will see him on the news.
“So all I can say is ‘take a minute, close your eyes, and what would your life be without your brother or sister?’“
Marni's bedroom serves as a place the family can go to feel her presence, to touch her mementos — a stuffed bear, jewelry and watches — and wait for her return.
"There is a numb sensation,” acknowledges Sherry Kagan. “I know I'm sitting here speaking with you, but part of me really isn't. I'm just so sure that this is not happening. But I look around and I see that it is. And so if anybody has any idea where she is, we'd all so very much appreciate it."
Anyone with knowledge of Marni Kagan's whereabouts is encouraged to call the Pembroke Pines Police at 954-447-1718.