CLEARFIELD, Utah. (WZZM) -- Two women in Utah are now speaking out about a Michigan mom's plea to bring her missing son's body back home. The women say that the teenager was living under the roof of a convicted child molester.
For Cathy Jones, a home near Ogden, Utah was filled with lies and sexual abuse. She lived there with her mother, sisters, and a step-brother named Lee Beeler. "We were always wondering where Lee came from. He was my brother, we loved him as a brother."
Jones was told Lee was adopted by her step-father, Robert Beeler. In 2003, Robert was convicted of molesting a child and sent to prison. He died in 2012.
Amanda Wilson, one of Lee's step-sisters, says her step-father Robert sexually abused her. "He's done it to my brother and several of our friends." Wilson says they were all afraid of Robert. "He told us he'd kill our mother in front of us and then I could watch my brother die."
In 1982, Lee was crushed by a car he had been working on in the driveway. His death was ruled an accident, but the family had doubts. There had been a fight between Amanda and Robert. "He had slapped me. Lee was asking him to leave us alone. He and Robert went outside and when he came back-in, he said Lee was dead."
Lee was buried with a tombstone that reads, "Lee Beeler, beloved son of Robert Beeler." It wasn't until several years later that Cathy found a letter written by Lee. He mentioned his biological mother in Michigan. Cathy turned to the internet for answers and found Mary Hagadus. Mary had been searching for her son for 32 years.
"I prayed and prayed that someday, he would come home." Mary says her son, whose name is Lee Jourdan, ran away from home in 1980 when he was 17 years old. In several messages between Utah and Michigan, Mary was given the bad news. She sent pictures of Lee to police in Utah, who are now certain he's her son.
"We're now preparing documentation where we will petition the court to obtain an order to exhume," said Mike Stenquist, deputy chief for the Clearfield Police Department.
"I can't imagine that he would want to be buried under a child molesters name," Mary told WZZM. "I can't imagine him not wanting to be with us."
It's become a mission for Mary and for Lee's step-sisters in Utah. They all want Lee to be brought back home. "That's what I set out to do. "I love him, but he doesn't belong to us. He needs to be with his family," Jones said.