Missing Women of Color
In partnership with the Vashon Theater, Vashon Remembrance Project would like to draw attention to persons of color who have disappeared.
Negative experiences with law enforcement can make BIPOC communities less likely to report crimes or missing persons; worsened by data showing that missing white children receive far more media coverage than missing BIPOC children despite higher rates of missing children among communities of color.
Kimberly Nicole ARRINGTON
Disappeared in 1998
Adapted from an article written by Phillip Rosenbaum for CNN.
Kimberly Arrington was 16 when she disappeared in 1998, and her father still waits for her to come home. So does a little girl she never met who carries her name.
Walter Arrington remembers "a good girl" who enjoyed listening to music, dancing and learning computers at school, where she was well-behaved. "I've been going through this for the last  years, and I feel like this might be my last chance of ever seeing my daughter or somebody recovering her," he said, hoping a story would compel someone to come forward.
Someone may have asked his daughter for directions, Walter Arrington believes, and forced her into a car as she walked to a CVS pharmacy near her home Montgomery, Alabama, on the day before Halloween, October 30, 1998. Whether Arrington made it to the pharmacy after she left home shortly after 5 p.m. will probably never be known. No credible witnesses came forward, and there was no surveillance video from the store.
"Most people liked her, and she was very friendly towards everybody,'' he said. "I felt like maybe that's part of the reason why they got her.''
Kimberly Arrington left the family's home about 5 p.m., telling her mother where she was going, according to police. And then she simply vanished. Kim Arrington's mother, who was ill, died in 2005.
"It wasn't easy for her, either,'' Walter Arrington said, recalling that one of the last things his wife asked was whether he will continue to look for Kim.
Whatever her fate, Kimberly Arrington's name lives on. In 2004, her sister Jennifer named her daughter Kim, after her missing aunt. The girl, who knows that her mother's sister is missing, often asks when she's going to meet "Auntie Kim."
Her disappearance remains a mystery with few clues and no strong leads, according to investigators in Montgomery. Despite dozens of interviews with family, friends, classmates and city residents, no viable witnesses were found in the days, months and years that followed, said Capt. Keith Barnett of the Montgomery Police Department.
"We had nobody that saw her get snatched up. Nobody found her purse or jacket or anything on the side of the road,'' Barnett said. "She just disappeared. She left home and disappeared.''
"For an older girl to be abducted and vanish -- if that's what really happened -- would be unusual,'' Barnett said.
VRP is deeply appreciative for the support of the Vashon Theater for this installation.