Grinnell College alums seek justice for Tammy Zywicki, a Marlton resident abducted and killed in 1992

Tammy Zywicki 1992

The Task Force for Tammy, directed by two Grinnell College graduates concerned about their friend’s cold case, has launched a campaign on in hopes of jump-starting the investigation into the abduction and murder of Marlton resident and Grinnell senior Tammy Zywicki in 1992.

“This holiday season will be the 23rd Christmas that the Zywicki family has observed with heartbreak because of Tammy’s absence,” said Julie Kaster Estlick, a friend of Zywicki and a 1992 graduate of Grinnell College.

“The family has sought justice for their daughter and sister, Tammy, for more than 22 years,” added 1993 Grinnell College graduate Amy Fort, a friend and classmate of Zywicki. “It’s time for this case to be solved, and for Tammy’s family and friends to gain some closure by learning who is responsible for this heinous crime.”

So far nearly 600 supporters from around the world have signed the online petition, which was launched by Fort and Estlick as leaders of the Task Force for Tammy.

“Our work in finding justice for Tammy and her family is far from done,” Fort said. “We’re asking people to sign the petition as a holiday gift to the Zywicki family. We hope those who sign will share the petition with family, friends and co-workers via Facebook, email, Twitter and other social media. Together, we can make a difference in this case.”

The Task Force for Tammy aims to gather 10,000 signatures supporting the petition, which is addressed to Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn and Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan. The petition urges them to instruct the Illinois State Police to release more information to the public that could help solve this 22-year-old case.

This information includes the exact model of Canon EOS camera missing from Zywicki’s car, a picture/drawing of the musical wristwatch known to be missing from her person, and a complete list of descriptions of all vehicles and persons reported to have been seen near her car prior to her abduction.

“For over two decades the ISP has regurgitated the same vague information to the public via press releases, all the while appealing to the public to help them find her killer,” according to the petition. “If they continue to hide information from the public, our ability to help is limited, and the ISP is hampering the resolution of this case.”

Zywicki, a 21-year-old student at Grinnell College, was driving to campus to start her senior year when her car broke down and she was abducted at mile marker 83 on Interstate Highway 80 in LaSalle County, Ill, on Aug. 23, 1992.

Nine days later her body was found about 500 miles away in a ditch alongside Interstate 44 near Springfield, Miss. She had been raped, stabbed and wrapped up in a blanket that was sealed at both ends with duct tape.

The FBI assisted local law enforcement agencies with the investigation, but by early 1993, the combined task force was disbanded without finding Zywicki’s killer.

To date, no one has been brought to justice for this crime, although the FBI and Illinois State Police continue to seek information from the public. In addition, the FBI offers a reward of up to $50,000 for information leading to the identification of the individual or individuals responsible for the crime.

Please visit to access the petition.