Barbara Louise Cotton vanished from Williston, N.D. on April 11, 1981, never to be heard from again.

Her case is considered open and ongoing by both the North Dakota Bureau of Criminal Investigation and the Williston Police Department. She is officially listed as a "missing person." North Dakota law enforcement remain consistently tight-lipped about cold cases in the state. The North Dakota Attorney General's cold case page states the following: "These cold cases are active investigations, and therefore we are not able to release records or provide additional information."

On April 11, 2021 Dakota Spotlight Podcast joined friends and family of Barbara Cotton in a celebration of her life at Recreation park in Williston. Members of the community joined representatives of the Williston police department to offer their support to the Cotton family.

Friends and family gather at Recreation Park, Williston, N.D. to celebrate the life of missing person Barbara Louise Cotton. April 11, 2021. James Wolner / Forum News Service, Katie Ryan-Anderson / Special to FCC
Friends and family gather at Recreation Park, Williston, N.D. to celebrate the life of missing person Barbara Louise Cotton. April 11, 2021. James Wolner / Forum News Service, Katie Ryan-Anderson / Special to FCC

"It's a special day," said Katie Ryan-Anderson who drove from Jamestown to attend the gathering. "It's a beautiful day, but a bittersweet day."

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In episode 12 of Dakota Spotlight:

  • Sounds from the celebration of Barbara's life in Recreation Park on Sunday April, 11, 2021
  • 3 interviews with persons who believe they saw Barbara on the night they disappeared.
  • A frustrated former resident of Williston just wants to be heard by law enforcement.

Listen to Episode 12

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Listen here to the podcast or anywhere podcasts are found (Spotify, Apple, Google Podcasts, Stitcher etc.)

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True Crime podcasts BY JAMES WOLNER

RELATED Podcast homepage | Newsletter | Season 3 videos | Season 2: 1976 Zick murders | jwolner@forumcomm.com

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