The case of Mary Traversa hasn’t been far from my mind since I first read about it. I even thought she was haunting me for a time. Perhaps this was just temporary insanity…. or maybe she’s a woman who’s murder requires attention and resolution.
On May 13, 1997 at around 1:30 a.m. her fire-engulfed van was discovered on the side of road. She’d been on her way home from work. It would have been ruled an accident if it hadn’t been for the bullet found in her neck.
By all accounts she was a hardworking mother of two and she was taking care of her aging father as well. She had no known enemies, which led law enforcement to believe that this was a random act of violence. Her death was senseless and reminds me so much of my own mother’s senseless murder.
Cold case entry for Mary on the Osceola County website.
News stories published by the Orlando Sentinel plus one additional clip from the Tampa Bay Times:
May 14, 1997: FIERY WRECK HID MYSTERY BULLET HOLE/Orlando Sentinel
May 16, 1997: DEAD DRIVER’S VAN ALSO HIT BY BULLET/Orlando Sentinel
May 17, 1997: NO LEADS IN DEATH OF VAN’S DRIVER/Orlando Sentinel
July 9, 1997: NEW TIP BRINGS HOPE IN PROBE OF I-4 SLAYING/Orlando Sentinel
June 29, 1997: DEATH ON INTERSTATE 4 // Who Killed Mary Traversa?/Tampa Bay Times
August 1, 1997: POLICE: LIE TESTS MAY LEAD TO I-4 GUNMAN/Orlando Sentinel