John and Daphne Wallman are determined to find out what happened.
John and Daphne Wallman are determined to find out what happened. Peter Holt

Mum's new hope to find Marilyn

DAPHNE Wallman sees her clearly.

She’s walking up stairs, calling for her: “Mum, mum.”

When Mrs Wallman first had this dream of her oldest daughter Marilyn, 39 years ago, it was the night the 14-year-old went missing on her way to school and she woke the next day knowing in her heart she would never see her again.

It is a dream she has had several times since.

“It is real. I saw her clearly,” Mrs Wallman said yesterday.

“Marilyn and I were very close.”

Daphne and John Wallman, now 75, have been on an emotional rollercoaster since March 21, 1972, when their daughter went missing after leaving home on Mackay-Eimeo Rd on her bike.

Now, once again, they are being plunged into the upheaval of another lead that could give them the answers to what happened to their girl.

Police are investigating a person of interest believed to have been living in Mackay at the time of Marilyn’s disappearance and who is now living interstate.

“We know that somebody knows something,” Mrs Wallman said.

“Johnny and I want answers.

"We’re getting to the older side of life and it gets that way that you don’t want to give up but it gets hard.

"It takes it out of you.

"People can go along in life but we feel we can’t because we don’t know what happened.

"And whoever did this to Marilyn is getting away with it.”

It’s a fact that tears at Mrs Wallman’s heart and she admits there have been times her faith has been tested.

“I don’t want to lose faith.”

While the Wallmans have struggled with the tragedy and frustration the family has remained solid.

Formerly cane farmers, the Wallmans, who are retired and live in Mackay, have three other children, including Lenore, 42, and sons David, 50, and Rex, 48, who in later years have taken over the public side of their fight for answers to ease the toll on their parents.

“(John and I) have gained strength together through this, and we have a lot to be thankful for. You would get torn apart if you didn’t have each other.

“But Marilyn has been gone for most of our married life.

"That’s a long time... It is getting very hard on Johnny.”

Mrs Wallman said they had been in consultation with Detective Sergeant Andre Wijtenberg, of Mackay police, who has been working on the Wallman case for many years, regarding the latest turn of events.

"They remain determined to find out what happened that day.

Marilyn left home for school at 7.42am riding her bike to a nearby bus stop.

Her brothers, then aged 11 and 9, followed shortly after.

They found her bicycle on the side of the road with her school port open next to it.

Her hat was found in a paddock nearby, as if flung there.

“There is a pain with not being able to (have) your loved one to bury and know where they are.

"Until you do, you just don’t have that finality,” Mrs Wallman said.

Anyone with information about Marilyn’s disappearance can telephone Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.


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