There are a few hundred unsolved murders in the Portland Police Cold Case Homicide Unit.
For some victims' family members, time helps with the grieving process. But for others, the human spirit is less resilient.
"It was pretty hard on all of us and it's still hard," sad Ella Boyer, the mother of a murder victim.
Ella Boyer's son, Kenneth Boyer, 20, was murdered in 1985. The anguish of bereavement is still etched on her face.
"When Kenny died, my baby daughter had a nervous breakdown, I had a nervous breakdown," she said. "We both ended up in the hospital. I still can't deal with this."
it was the dawn of a new year -- Jan. 1, 1985.
Ella recalled her son had gone out the night before to celebrate the new year.
"We always stayed home to celebrate new year's," she said. "But since he was at his age, I didn't mind him going out."
Kenneth Boyer never made it home.
Police said Boyer's body was found slumped in the driver's seat of his green Oldsmobile sedan early the next morning. The car was parked in a remote, industrial area north of St. Johns.
Cold case investigators question why Boyer was ever there in the first place.
"The logical conclusion is that he was there to meet somebody that he didn't want people to see it, for one reason or another," said retired homicide detective George Young, who recently reviewed the Boyer case. "Another explanation is he was driving with someone in the car and they compelled him to pull over in that location."
Investigators said the ground was frozen and there were no obvious tire tracks or footprints leading from the car.
They said Kenneth Boyer may have been involved in some criminal activity in the weeks before the killing.
Initial detectives identified several people who may have been involved in the crime, but no arrests were made.
"Mr. Boyer was clearly killed by someone he knew and clearly there are people who know who did it," Young said.
Ella Boyer still hopes someone will come forward and bring closure to the case, that has had a lasting effect on her family's lives.
"I don't socialize with people anymore, I just stay home in my house all the time."
If you have any information about this crime, you can leave a Crime Stoppers tip online at www.crimestoppersoforegon.com
or text CRIMES (274637) and in the subject line put 823HELP, followed
by your tip, or call 503-823-HELP (4357) and leave your tip information.
Visit tipsoft.com to download the Crime Stoppers app for the iPhone or Droid.
Copyright 2012 KPTV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.
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