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Two Rhode Island children found after missing since 1985

Kelly Yates

Two missing Rhode Island children that were abducted by their mother in 1985 have been located.

Elaine Yates, and her two children Kelly, 10-months and Kimberly, 3, went missing from their  Warwick, Rhode Island home in 1985.  Elaine went missing about three weeks after she found her husband, Russell Yates with another woman aboard the family’s boat, reports the New York Times in 1990.  After Elaine found Russell, she jumped in to her car and drove to her mother’s summer-house in Pt. Judith with the children.  An hour later Russell arrived and thought they had worked it all out, but several hours later they began arguing about the incident.  The argument continued until Elaine began hitting Russell and Russell struck her back, according to the Providence Journal article.  Russell thought the whole incident had been settled, but three weeks later, Russell came home after working and found that Elaine had left, taking the children with him.  He reported them missing to the police.  In 1988 a warrant was issued for Elaine’s arrest.

Kimberly Yates
Kimberly Yates

Elaine’s mother, Mary Pidgeon who was 77 at the time, was sent to jail in 1990 when she would not tell the court where Elaine or the children were.  After the sentencing Mary pleaded out loud for Elaine to return with the children.  Russell criticized his wife for abandoning her mother and told the media.

‘If she can let her mother just sit there… then that’s a different type of person that can do that. Could you do that to your mother?’ he asked a reporter.

After seven days Mary was released and the Judge felt the courts did all they could to coerce her to talk.  It has never been clear whether Mary knew where they were or not.

Russell won custody of the children when Elaine did not show up in court.  Subsequently he sued Mary Pidgeon after she released from prison, as he believed Mary knew were Elaine and the children were, reports the New York Times.

Kelly Yates
Kelly Yates

Russell wrote a post in 1990 that read:

Hobbies and Interests:My hobby and interest or rather passion is in finding my two missing children that were abducted by their non-custodial mother, Elaine Carolyn Yates (Pigeon).

Kimberly Ann Yates, born Oct 15, 1981 and Kelly Ann Yates, born Oct 26, 1984 you were both abducted by your mother on Aug 26, 1986 while I was at work. Kimberly you were 3 1/2 and Kelly you were 10 months. I have been looking for you ever since. Your mothers real name is Elaine Carolyn Yates ( Pigeon) and you grandmothers name is Mary Pigeon. Your grandmother is currently in a nursing home recovering from a stroke. Your mother use to work at Fleet Bank here in Rhode Island as a senior systems analyst. Kelly you were to young to remember any of this but Kimberly you should. Gramma & Grampa Yates use to take you for walks to the pond to feed the ducks. You use to like to play in daddy’s bar, Copperfield’s Lounge, with all the pool tables. We use to have 2 Old English Sheep dogs, Shane and Shawn. Your Grandmother Mary Pigeon had one named Heidi. Your moms brother, Joe and I were in Viet Nam where he got killed. I love and think of you two all the time. Gramma and Grampa Yates, Auntie Maggie and Uncle David love and miss you both too. What your mother did has broken many hearts and dreams. Every day we are one day closer to holding you both , hugging you and letting you know how much we all love and care for you. Plus there is some one special that really needs you both. You have a little sister that is just turning 2. She’s alone and needs you guys very much. I tell her all the time that she has 2 big sisters. She looks just like you both did when you were her age. If anyone out there that is reading this knows of 2 sisters 13 & 16 that don’t know much about their family see if any of this is familiar to them. Please get in touch with me with any ideas or leads. Don’t worry how small it may seem or that you may be getting my hopes up over nothing. That’s how it all may start and end , with your help. One last thing. If you have any children make sure you always give them a special hug for you may never know when you might not be able to give them one for a while. Thanks and I hope I hear from someone with some news or leads. Russ Yates

After receiving a tip where the Yates sisters were at in December, Elaine was located in Houston, Texas.   Elaine was using the  name of Liana Waldberg, reports the Warwick Post.  Elaine will be 70 this year and Kelly is 32-years-old and Kimberly is 35-years-old.  Kelly and Kimberly also changed their names.

Elaine Yates
Elaine Yates

Their father, who had been granted custody, was “relieved” to learn they had been located, police said.  It will be up to his children whether they will reunite with their dad or not.  Since they are both adults they cannot be made to reconnect with him.  A lot of it will probably have to do with what Elaine told them about their father, if she told them anything at all.

Elaine Yates was arraigned by a Judge in Houston, and she waived extradition. She will be formally arraigned in Rhode Island on Wednesday, Jan. 18.

Social Media are split on this matter where many want Elaine to go to jail for what she did and others believe it should dropped after all this time.

Nina Briley posted, “Sad that their mom who had their best interest in mind will have to face the consequences.”

Jessica Ann posted, “How do you know she had their best interest at heart?  Some people do stupid things like this to be revengeful.”

Kenneth McKinney posted, “Now their mom will go to prison for the next 20 years.

Amber Jackson replied, “Mom, we’re gonna use that term very loosely.”

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