ST. CHARLES COUNTY, MO - It has been 25 years since the body of Angie Housman was found by deer hunters in St. Charles County. Her unsolved murder still weighs heavily on people who loved her and many who never met her.
A Facebook group called Angie Housman's 'Angels for Justice' is bringing new attention to the case and helping to keep the investigation alive.
Trisha Trout, Amy Bittner, and Debbie Klingler say they are just three moms who came together to advocate for Housman. The women never met the 9-year-old from St. Ann, but they have never forgotten what happened to her 25 years ago.
"It not only rocked our communities, it also rocked our state just to know that there's still a killer or killers out there that has not received justice," said Trout.
On November 18, 1993, Housman vanished after getting off a school bus near her home.
At the time, Diane Schulte was Housman's neighbor and said the girl would often spend time at her house after school where she would play with nail polish and makeup. Schulte told Fox 2 she loved Housman like her own grandchild.
"She was just a happy-go-lucky little girl who thought everyone was her friend," said Schulte.
Schulte said they lived in a nice neighborhood with a church and where kids played outside.
"It was a safe neighborhood," Schulte said. "Never would've thought something like that would've happened."
After Housman disappeared, neighbors canvassed the area and hung fliers with the missing girl's picture. Schulte said parents started watching their kids more closely.
Housman's body was found by deer hunters nine days after she disappeared bound to a tree at the Busch Wildlife Area in St. Charles County. Housman died from exposure, but police said she had been sexually assaulted, tortured and starved. She died just hours before she was found.
"What they did to that little girl was so uncalled for," said Schulte. "They're animals."
Schulte said she is haunted by what happened to Housman.
Housman's mother, Diane Bone died in 2016. Since then, Angie Housman's Angels for Justice have stepped up their efforts in hopes of bringing new interest and new leads to the case.
"We actually go out to the communities, follow the leads, interview some suspects that were even brought in, talked to a lot of people in the community," said Trout.
Bittner said the women have spent "endless hours" and have boxes of documents collected through their years of searching for answers.
The St. Charles County Police Department will not comment on the case calling it an "open, active and ongoing investigation." Investigators encourage anyone with tips, in this case, to call the department at 636-949-3002.
In the meantime, Angie Housman's Angels say they will keep fighting for justice, and they have a message for her killer.
"You've not gotten away with anything," said Trout. "We are not going anywhere, and we will not stop looking for you."
A tree and memorial plaque stand at Buder Elementary School in St. Ann in memory Housman. Angie Housman's Angels for Justice will hold a candlelight vigil at the school on Saturday, Dec. 1 at 7 p.m. All are welcome.