9pm Friday 13 June 2008 marks 28 years since my friend Elizabeth Herfort was last seen.
I knew Elizabeth from my school days at Phillip College. She was one of my classmates and we ‘hung’ in the same large circle of friends. She was an intelligent, thoughtful and kind girl. She was a very nice person. In 1980 we were finished year 12 and had moved on to University. Elizabeth was studying at ANU as were others in our group that Friday night. I was studying at Art School.
I remember that day so clearly. Some of our group started to arrive
at the Union Bar about lunchtime, others, including Elizabeth, arrived later
after lectures finished. We stayed until the bar closed at 9pm. There was
no live music planned for the Refectory or upstairs in the bar so we all
said our goodbyes and went home our seperate ways. Although we had been at
the bar for several hours we drunk slowly and chatted a lot… and I don’t
recall anyone in our group being drunk. Binge drinking was uncool and we
were more interested holding sophisticated, intelligent discussions on
Elizabeth lived on the Southside and in those days buses were few and far between after 7pm. Canberra was a quiet place and kids felt safe hitching home.
Elizabeth was a happy girl, with plans and dreams for the future. It is impossible that she simply chose to ‘drop out’… it was not in her nature.
In the years that have gone past I can’t help but think of the fear and horror she must have felt later that night. I wish there was some sort of warning of the events that would unfold. There wasn’t. It was just a happy Friday night’s get together for a group of friends, just like others we had shared.
The night previous to Elizabeth’s disappearance two nurses disappeared after an evening spent at the TollHouse Hotel in Parramatta and I can’t help but wonder if this is more than coincidence.
Please, at 9pm on Friday night pause for a moment to think of Elizabeth. The family and friends she left behind would all like to help her find peace at last.
If anyone has any information regarding Elizabeth (no matter how insignificant it may seem to you) I urge you to contact CrimeStoppers on 1800 333 000.
Still no trace of Canberra teenager Elizabeth Herfort
Young girl's mystery disappearance "haunts" family 36 years on