Family pleads for answers, continues search for missing woman 25 years later

If you have any information, please call the Tulsa Police Department at 918-596-9143 or Crime Stoppers at 918-596-COPS. (KTUL)

TULSA, Okla. (KTUL) -- Oklahoma continues to investigate 237 missing person cases, at least one of those is right here in Tulsa County.

Kristina Ritzhaupt was just two days shy of turning eight years old on February 17, 1993.

"I got on the school bus that morning and my mom told me she would pick me up after school," Ritzhaupt said.

But her mom, Tracy Samuels, never showed.

"It was completely out of her behavior to not pick me up from school," Ritzhaupt said.

More than two decades later, she and her family continue looking for Samuels.

"You never want to close the door on a possibility of them coming back, but you also don't know how to grieve, you don't know what to do, you don't know how to move on, honestly you are frozen in that time because you don't know for sure what happened," Ritzhaupt said.

She says her mom was a soccer star, well-loved and an amazing mom.

"She took care of me, we were always together," Ritzhaupt said.

She's keeping those memories alive every day while searching for answers.

Many came to honor Samuels on this 25th anniversary of her disappearance.

Everyone tossed flowers into the river with a prayer for answers.

"Please come forward, we need you to be brave, we need you to be courageous because that is what is going to change this for investigators," Ritzhaupt said.

The details surrounding the case are still under investigation, but Ritzhaupt believes her mom was taken against her will and Tulsa Police Homicide Detective Eddie Majors agrees.

"Based on what I have come to learn about her, she would not just leave her children," Majors said.

A witness told police he saw Samuels get into the passenger side of a white truck driven by a man with a mustache.

Majors continues to work tips in the case, some as recently as two weeks ago, but he knows there are people out there with the information he needs and he wants them to come forward.

"Because if you don't, you are just as culpable as the person who did it," Majors said. "You are letting someone get away with murder."

"Somebody knows, somebody out there knows and it has been a long 25 years," Samuels' mom Marsha Chastain said. "I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy."

Chastain is pleading for the last pieces of information in this puzzle.

"I just ask that you search your hearts and find a way to come forward," she said.

Samuels was 24 when she went missing, today she would be 49.

If you have any information, please call the Tulsa Police Department at 918-596-9143 or Crime Stoppers at 918-596-COPS.