A kind volunteer searcher had sent these articles The Lima News Tuesday, November 5, 1963
Woman Missing From Van Wert; Search Begins
VAN WERT - The Van Wert County Sheriff's Department has begun a search for Mrs. Mary Lou Aiken, 27, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Lawrence Herminghuysen, 664 N. Jefferson, sheriff W. L. Clay has announced. Mrs. Aiken disappeared from her home Oct. 27, riding a boy's bicycle. She has blonde hair, weighs 135 pounds and is 5 feet 8 inches tall. She lived with her parents. Her son John, 5, was fatally injured Sept. 11 when struck by an automobile near his home.
The Lima News Tuesday, November 26, 1963, Lima, Ohio
LAST STOP - Mrs. Mary Lou Aiken, 27, was found dead in a barn Monday afternoon by hunter Ed Grimes who followed two pigeons into the weatherbeaten structure eight miles north of Van Wert. She had been missing since Oct. 27. Shown in this photo of the death scene is a hammock, sleeping bag and bicycle - all belonging to the woman. It is believed she went to the barn, suffering despondency after the accidental death of her 5-year-old son, John.
Mother's Body Discovered Van Wert Tragedy Sees Final Lines
VAN WERT - Mysterious disappearance of a young woman separated from her husband and whose only child had been killed by an automobile was solved here Monday. She was found dead in an abandoned barn. The body of Mary Lou Aiken, 27, who had left home on a bicycle carrying a sleeping bag and a sack of apples nearly a month ago, was discovered by a hunter. Inside the weatherbeaten barn she lay on the ground, clothed in blue jeans and plaid shirt. Death apparently occurred shortly after Mrs. Aiken left the home of her parents at 664 N. Jefferson. Dr. W. C. Trapp, Van Wert County coroner, indicated she had been dead several weeks. A bottle which had contained sleeping pills was found in the barn. Dr. Trapp late this morning ruled death resulted from pneumonia by exposure. The mother's tragic story unfolded Monday night after Sheriff Wilmer Clay was called to the property, located on Dutch John Road 1.5 miles south of the Paulding County line and owned by W. J. Flickinger of Rt. 3, Van Wert. The young mother's husband was serving with the U. S. Marines when their 5-year-old son started kindergarten. One evening in early autumn, playing a block away from his home, the boy was struck by a car and killed. Despondency followed, according to the parents, Mr. and Mrs. Lawrence Herminghysen, and Oct. 27 Mrs. Aiken disappeared. Her parents at first believed she had left on a camping trip. But prolonged absence prompted concern of parents and authorities. On Nov. 5 two water-filled stone quarries northwest of here were dragged after apples were seen floating on the water. That search turned up nothing. Monday Edward Grimes of Scott, kicking through the weeds and brush of the desolate neighborhood, followed his quest for game into the barn. There was the body, a hammock, Mrs. Aiken's bicycle and a canteen still holding water. There was no evidence of cooking. Mrs. Aiken was born April 2, 1936, in Indianapolis. She lived all of her life, however, in Van Wert and was graduated from Van Wert High School in 1954. She was a member of Emmanuel Lutheran Church. She served two years with the Women's Marines at Cherry Point, N. C. Funeral services will be Wednesday at 3:30 p.m. in Alspach Funeral Home in Van Wert. Rev. J. T. Gerkin will officiate, and burial will be in Ridge Cemetery. Friends may call at the funeral home.
Besides a picture of the barn, there is also a picture of Mary Lou.