Amy Lynn Bradley, 23, was eager to start her once-in-a-lifetime journey as she boarded the cruise liner Rhapsody of the Seas. Though she was a bit afraid of the heavy seas, the anticipation of a delightful week spent sailing around the Caribbean Islands with her family, including parents Ron and Iva and brother Brad, was a dealbreaker.
The band Blue Orchid played at the ship’s nightclub on the third night, where Amy and Brad partied. Amy, from Petersburg, Virginia, was captured on camera that evening laughing and dancing on the dance floor.
The siblings returned to the family cabin at around three in the morning, where they spoke on the balcony before Brad went to bed. At 5.30 in the morning, Ron awoke to see his daughter dozing off on a deck chair on the balcony. But Amy was not there when he awoke once more at 6 am.
Even her footwear was still in the room; the only other items missing were her cigarettes and lighter.
Ron was aware that she would notify someone before leaving.
He looked about the ship’s common rooms out of concern before telling Iva and Brad. They immediately informed the ship’s crew and pleaded with them to issue a warning and prevent any exits until she was located.
“Don’t allow anyone to leave this boat. My daughter has been taken!” cried Ron.
What Happened to Amy Lynn Bradley?
Amy Lynn Bradley is an American who is known for vanishing in late March 1998 while traveling to Curaçao aboard the Royal Caribbean International cruise ship Rhapsody of the Seas. She was 23 years old. Her whereabouts are still a mystery. She had just graduated from Longwood University at the time of her abduction and was 23 years old.
On Monday, March 23, 1998, after midnight, Amy and her younger brother Brad danced at the ship’s nightclub. Records indicate that Brad chose to go back to his cabin before Amy. Brad entered his cabin at roughly 3:35 AM and Amy soon after, five minutes later, according to the ship’s door lock logs.
Before going to bed, the two talked. Around 6:00 AM, Amy’s father, Ron, awoke to check on his daughter but discovered she was gone from the balcony she had been sleeping on earlier.
The Netherlands Antilles Coast Guard began a four-day search in the nearby waterways and along the cruise lines when officials received word that Amy was missing, but they came up empty-handed.
Though Amy was known to be a great swimmer and searches turned up no trace of her, authorities started to assume that she might have fallen overboard and perished. However, investigators have rejected this possibility.
There may possibly be Bradley sightings in Curaçao. Tourists spotted a woman who looked like Bradley on a beach in August 1998, and a U.S. Navy sailor said in 1999 that a woman at a brothel identified herself as Bradley and requested assistance.
After Amy vanished, additional information would come to light, fueling suspicions of her being bought into the human trafficking trade or even her possible remains. The case was discussed on America’s Most Wanted as well as Dr. Phil in a piece titled “The Search for Natalee: Amy Bradley.”
Who was Amy Lynn Bradley?
Amy Lynn Bradley lived in Virginia’s Chesterfield County. She went to Longwood University near her hometown and earned a degree in physical education there. She was recognized for her excellent swimming skills and had previously worked as a lifeguard.
She attended on a basketball scholarship. After graduating from college, Amy intended to begin a new career as a computer consultant.
Amy decided to go on a family cruise vacation on the Royal Caribbean International ship Rhapsody of the Seas to Curaçao, a Dutch Caribbean Island governed by the Kingdom of the Netherlands, as a celebratory event.
She was hesitant to go since she was afraid of the large boat and the ocean, but she did not want to miss the opportunity to see her family.
The Events Leading to the Disappearance of Amy Lynn Bradley
Amy and her family boarded the cruise ship bound for Curaçao on March 21, 1998. Before the disappearance, Amy and her brother Brad made the choice to party all night with the ship’s band, Blue Orchid, and dance at a Mardi Gras nightclub party.
Alister Douglas, also known as “Yellow,” a band member, was drinking with Amy that evening and claimed to have left the party around 1:00 am. When Amy and Yellow were dancing, a videographer by the name of Chris Fenwick could also record it.
Around 3:35 a.m., Brad decided to retire to the family cabin for the remainder of the evening. Brad and Amy returned to the cabin at 3:35 a.m., and the electronic door lock system on board the ship noted their arrivals five minutes apart.
Amy remained awake for a little while longer before falling asleep shortly after, according to Brad, who said that he and his sister talked while sitting on the balcony of their suite.
How Did Amy Lynn Bradley Disappear?
Between 5:15 and 5:30 on March 24, 1998, Amy’s father, Ron, awoke and stepped out of bed to see how his kids were doing. He discovered Amy still dozing off on the lounge chair on their cabin’s balcony.
However, she was gone along with her cigarettes and lighter when he woke up at 6:00 am. “I left to try to go up and find her,” he subsequently remarked. It was highly unusual for Amy to leave without telling us where she was going, so I wasn’t sure what to believe when I couldn’t find her.
After searching the ship’s public areas, Ron alerted the rest of the family of Amy’s disappearance around 6:30 am.
Investigation Into Her Disappearance
Amy’s family alerted the aboard crew as soon as Amy went missing, and they continued to beg the crew to prevent the ship’s 2,000 passengers from disembarking and to make an announcement to help find Amy.
But they were told by the staff in the purser’s office that it was too early to issue a ship-wide proclamation. After most passengers had left the ship by 7:50 am, the crew decided to make an announcement asking Amy Bradley to report to the purser’s desk.
The cruise personnel looked all throughout the ship between 12:15 and 1:00, but Amy was not found. Amy’s chances of being found may have been decreased due to the crew’s delay in starting the search and inquiry into her disappearance by allowing the passengers to disembark against the Bradley family’s advice.
After a four-day search by the Dutch Caribbean Coast Guard ended on March 27, 1998, Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines rented a boat to look for her. The Coast Guard utilized three helicopters and a radar plane to aid in the search.
Amy Lynn Bradley Sighted
The initial assumption made by the authorities was that Amy had either drowned or committed suicide. The fact that Amy was a great swimmer and that her body was never discovered in the water, as well as the absence of any indication of foul play, quickly ended this rumor.
Two guests reported to Ron that they observed a woman who matched Amy’s description bringing smokes and a lighter up an elevator to the ship’s deck the morning of her disappearance. This did not, however, result in any discoveries.
An eyewitness was a cab driver who reported that a woman who matched Amy’s description approached him and asked for a phone urgently. The authorities never verified this sighting.
Five months after the disappearance was made public, in August 1998, a Canadian computer engineer claimed to have seen Amy strolling alongside two men on a beach in Curaçao. The witness remarked that the woman kept attempting to catch his attention until he lost sight of her at a neighboring café.
He claimed to be “two feet away from her” and was quite positive that it was the woman because her tattoos supposedly matched Bradley’s.
A U.S. Navy Petty Officer reported seeing a lady at a Curaçao brothel in January 1999 who claimed to be Amy Bradley. He asserted that she identified herself as Amy Bradley and pleaded with him for assistance, saying she was being held against her will and could not leave.
He said he delayed reporting the incident because he was concerned that being in a brothel might jeopardize his career in the Navy. After he retired and saw Amy’s photo in a magazine, the witness only got in touch with her family. The witness’s assertion was unsupported by any evidence.
Another possible sighting occurred in March 2005 when a witness named Judy Maurer reported seeing Bradley in a department shop bathroom in Barbados.
She asserted that a woman and three males entered the restroom together and that they then threatened her if she did not carry out an agreement.
She claims that as soon as the guys had left, she approached the upset woman, who introduced herself as Amy and informed her that she was from Virginia before they returned and dragged her away. In response to Maurer’s call to the authorities, they produced composite sketches of the three men and the woman.
Amy Lynn Bradley Updates
Amy’s case has come up several times in recent years. America’s Most Wanted and a Dr. Phil broadcast featured the resurfacing of the cold case.
Amy’s parents received an email from Frank Jones, a self-described Navy Seal Soldier, in the fall of 1999. Frank claimed to be a former US Army Special Forces officer with a group of skilled warriors who might be able to save Amy, and he informed the family of this.
Jones claimed that his crew had witnessed Amy being held by heavily armed Colombian security guards in a housing complex encircled by barbed wire. The group also sang the lullaby that Amy’s mother used to sing to her as a child and accurately described Amy’s tattoos.
Frank would update the family and supply reports on their daughter’s sightings over the following few months. Jones stated that more money was required when he informed them that they would try to perform a rescue.
The Bradleys sent Jones a total of $210,000 to set up the search for Amy, and they were hoping to hear from Jones and his team to find out the outcome of the rescue operation, but they have yet to do so.
Jones had invented the narrative to defraud the Bradleys of their money. Federal prosecutors in Richmond accused him of stealing $24,444 from the Bradleys and $186,416 from the National Missing Children’s Organization in February 2002.
In April, Jones admitted guilty to mail fraud and was given a 5-year prison term.
Another event included the discovery of a jawbone in Aruba in 2010. Initially, it was believed to be Natalee Holloway’s jawbone from a different missing person case.
However, after Holloway’s jawbone was ruled out, officials stopped further testing even though nine other Caribbean tourists were reportedly missing. The material was not subjected to DNA testing. According to them, the bone is human and most likely has Caucasian ancestry.
Bradley’s parents may be seen on the Dr. Phil program on November 17, 2005. On the program, a picture of a young girl resembling Bradley that was sent to her parents in an email raises the possibility that she may have been sold into sexual slavery.
Two images of a woman who resembled Amy were shared in an email to the Bradley family website. A group representative that looks for victims on websites featuring sex workers noticed the photos. The woman in the picture, identified only as “Jas,” was a sex worker who appeared “distraught and dejected.”
Theories Regarding the Disappearance of Amy Lynn Bradley
The disappearance of Amy Lynn Bradley is the subject of various online conspiracy theories. One of these hypotheses was that she had been abducted and sold into the Caribbean’s shady human trafficking trade.
Multiple pieces of evidence, including a critical testimony from a US Navy officer who claimed to have overheard a staff member at a Caribbean brothel claiming to be Amy and a 2005 photo forwarded to Amy’s family, support this notion.
The contradictory statements made by the witnesses on the night of the disappearance would be another piece of evidence. In Others ‘ Magazine, Amy’s mother said, “I remember watching people observe her admiringly” and “Amy would have been a trophy.”
This scenario raises questions about the employees and band members that were on board the ship the night of the disappearance. One of these suspicions relates to the discrepancy between the account given to the police by band member “Yellow” and the footage obtained on CCTV that evening.
Many individuals believed that the disappearance also implicated a waiter. The same waiter repeatedly approached Amy’s family throughout the evening, requesting that they give Amy a note that included an invitation to join him for drinks once they arrived at land.
In addition, the expert photographer printed out every shot taken throughout the trip to be sold at a stall. Still, Amy’s family was unable to locate any of the prints, leading them to believe that someone had removed their prints.
Authorities also explored the possibility of Amy being killed on the ship and thrown overboard. The finding of a jawbone that washed up on an Aruba beach is the only proof of this.
The final hypothesis proposes Amy drowning or killing herself, as initially proposed by the authorities.
On March 24, 2010, 12 years after her disappearance—which had no witnesses and no body—Amy Lynn Bradley was ruled legally dead.
Next, read about The Mysterious Death of Cindy James and the Horrifying Events Preceding it. Then, you might like to read about Joe Metheny, the Man Who Made Burgers out of his Victims!
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