Remains Found Inside Truck in Lake Granbury Solves Cold Case

The discovery of a submerged pickup with skeletal remains in Lake Granbury, Texas, on Thursday may have solved the mystery of a woman who disappeared 35 years ago.

The truck was found near the Lake Bridge on Business 377 in Granbury.

Investigators believe the remains are those of Helen Hollady who disappeared in September 1979.

According to Sheriff Roger Deeds, a city employee first spotted the truck partially submerged in the lake as they were driving near the bridge on Pearl Street and called police.

"The first thing we were thinking was, 'We've been looking for Miss Holladay for years.'"

Sheriff Deeds said the front and rear of the pick-up truck were sticking out of the water.

"When we pulled the vehicle out, we found the skeletal remains of a person and also found identifying information with the body to tie it to Miss Holladay," said Deeds.

Deeds said old police reports said there was some disturbance at the weekend home of Holladay in the Whippoorwill Bay subdivision north of the lake.

The disturbance was between Holladay and her husband Herman. Herman Holladay was a suspect when Helen was reported missing, according to police. 

"Miss Hollady left the home after the disturbance and was last seen heading South towards Granbury on Highway 51." said Deeds. And that was the last time anyone heard from her or saw Helen Holladay.

Holladay's husband died in the 1980s.

Two surviving daughters have been informed about the discovery, the sheriff said.

Deeds also said over the past 35 years the have been searching for Holladay but couldn't find the 1970s model Chevy truck because it was covered in sediment which has built up on the vehicle over the past 35 years.

Deeds guessed the pickup was submerged in 15 feet of water until the lake levels recently began dropping and was about the same distance from the shore.

He said DNA testing to confirm the identify of the body could take weeks.

"It's not a total closure but at least the question of where mom has been all these years, we think we just solved that," Deeds said.

NBC 5's Scott Gordon contributed to this report.

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