The Porchlight Project Will Help Fund Exhumation of Nancy Eagleson

Nancy Eagleson was murdered in 1960.

Paulding County, OhioAugust 8, 2022 – Lawyer John DeMuth has filed a motion in Paulding County Probate Court to allow the body of Nancy Eagleson to be disinterred from the local cemetery where she was buried nearly sixty-two years ago. A hearing is set for September 20th, in front of Judge Michael Wehrcamp.

Fourteen-year-old Nancy Eagleson and her five-year-old sister, Sheryl, were walking home from a movie in downtown Paulding, Ohio, around seven p.m. on November 13, 1960 when a driver stopped beside them and asked if they needed a ride. In a flash, the man grabbed Nancy and forced her into the car in full view of several homes and sped away, leaving Sheryl behind. Sheryl was able to run to a neighbor’s house and give a description of the car.

Just six hours later, raccoon hunters found Nancy’s body in a clearing about a hundred feet off of a rural road outside of town.

Unfortunately, all physical evidence from the case was lost before the advent of DNA and genetic genealogy. The family’s last hope is that some piece of evidence can still be found by re-examining Nancy’s remains. DNA labs used for genetic genealogy have recently been successful in pulling data from a sample as small as four human cells.

Some of the funding for the exhumation and new DNA testing has already been raised by Nancy’s family. The rest will be funded by The Porchlight Project, a nonprofit that raises funds for DNA testing and genetic genealogy for Ohio cold cases.

Jeanne Windsor, an advocate for the Eagleson family was integral in helping DeMuth complete the paperwork for the motion at court. And the online cold case database,, helps to maintain reports and research related to Nancy’s unsolved murder. Both Jolynn Rice and Rachael Rosselet at Uncovered have personally helped the Eagleson family connect with media and law enforcement.

“This exhumation means so much to our family,” says Nancy’s surviving sisters, Sheryl Garza and Merrill Miller. “We have been waiting 62 years for some closure and justice for Nancy. In 1985 we found out Nancys physical evidence was lost or misplaced or discarded so this exhumation may provide the DNA we need to solve her case.”

“14-year-old Nancy Eagleson was abducted from a quiet country road in 1960 and killed shortly thereafter,” says Nic Edwards, spokesperson for The Porchlight Project. “Her family and the community of Paulding have been searching for answers ever since. This exhumation may be the last chance we have to get those answers and get justice for a little girl.”

Nancy’s family will host a public concert fundraiser Sunday, September 18 at 2 p.m. at the Branch Christian Fellowship, featuring former Pauling High School football star, Paul J. Miles, an award-winning songwriter, who will perform a tribute song about Nancy.

  • The Porchlight Project is funded through private donations from readers like you and by Ashley Flowers and the audiochuck Endowment fund at the Akron Community Foundation.


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