TORRANCE, Calif. – Siblings Randy and Tammy Hollis have been waiting 47 years to find out who kidnapped and killed their sister Terri Lynn Hollis.
"It's amazing that we've come to this day," Randy said. "I only wish that my parents were still alive to see this."
Terri Lynn Hollis was just 11-years-old when she disappeared from Torrance while riding her bike on Thanksgiving Day in 1972.
Her body was found in Ventura County the next day. She had been strangled and sexually assaulted.
"It was kind of surreal being 16, you don't think of it as something that is really happening and it wasn't normal for the city of Torrance," said Randy.
For almost five decades, this case had gone unsolved, until detectives were able to confirm their person of interest as Jake Edward Brown who also went by the alias Thomas Tracy Burum.
Detectives learned that Brown died in 2003 and was buried in Arizona.
They traveled to the state, and collected bone remains.
Using new technology for genetic genealogy, DNA Labs International in Florida was successful in extracting DNA evidence from the bones, and could confirm that Jake Edward Brown had murdered Terri Lynn Hollis.
"Under these very unfortunate circumstances, we are still proud to say that this case has been solved," Chief Eve Irvine said.
Despite knowing who did it, it will never take away the pain fully for Randy, but it does eliminate some distress.
"It takes away a lot of doubt about some of the things that I, should I have gone out and grabbed her?" said Randy.
And as the next Thanksgiving holiday nears in a few months, this one won't be any different than years past since Terri Lynn went missing on that fateful day.
Even though they now know who took Terri Lynn's life, for Randy and Tammy, that day will forever live on as a day of remembrance in her honor.
"I just go off by myself and I'll remember the day and give a moment of silence sort of like today is for 9/11 for people, you just, you take a moment to remember," said Randy.