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A classmate and a friend.

Miss Teresa Sue “Tess” Hilt

Loving the music

Tessie Hilt was the first person I met arriving on campus the first day of freshman year, 1970 at Northwest Missouri State College. She was very kind. She helped me through enrollment, orientation and ‘freshman fright’. Tess became a ‘pal’ and a good friend. She was a small girl with a big smile and even bigger laugh.

Tess was strangled and stabbed to death in her off campus apartment in Maryville Missouri, August 4, 1973. This crime has never been solved.

Tess should be a grandmother now. She should have a family, good friends and a beautiful life. And, her mother should have her only daughter, her only child, here to help in her advanced years.

Someone knows who hurt and killed her. You could come forward now and solve this case. After all these years, you could bring peace to Tess’ Mom and all the friends who miss her.

If you know anything, remember anything or even suspect anything that can help please let us know. Comment here privately and confidentially. Or at –  Thanks.

  1. Great website and beautiful pictures. I have added this website to my blogroll on DCC.

    My best, Vidocq
    Defrosting Cold Cases

  2. This is a topic that is near to my heart…
    Thank you! Exactly where are your contact details

  3. John Michael Steele permalink

    IMO, I believe John “Joe duck” Felton, N.W. MO Drug King Pin, had something to do with her murder.. Always have. His rich and politically influential Father, Curly Felton, kept John out of prison by keeping renowned, St. Joseph, criminal defense attorney, Ted Cranitz on retainer.


  4. I hate this. Ten years from now, it will be too late, if it isn’t already. It appears today, M-ville cops may be more versed in criminology than they were back in the early ’70’s. Back then they were just a bunch of local yokels w/H.S. diplomas, who could pass a background check and were big enough to handle drunks at the Pub, Palms, Cat Club or the Chugs/Dew Drop/Shady Lady. Otherwise, they couldn’t find their backsides with both hands tied to ’em. That Chief they had back then (Can’t remember his name) was slow as molasses in January.

    I am really disgusted. Met Tess a couple times back in ’71, when she was an undergrad and living in an upstairs apartment in an old house, above some old buddies of mine on Walnut? or Maple? She was a good kid, but we were all older Vets and didn’t have much in common with them. Couple of my buddies knew her better, but all but one is dead now.

    I still think John Felton’s bunch did it. We had another murder in M-ville a couple years later. The guy was beaten unconscious in an alley and left. It was in February and the guy froze to death. Met his mother in the Shady Lady one night. She was snot slingin’ drunk and told me all about it. She said Felton did it, because her son owed Felton money for drugs. She was mad at Danny Estes, because he wouldn’t arrest Felton. Of course he couldn’t on just hearsay.

    Pardon all the gas folks, just an old man venting.

  5. I admire your passion. Hopefully there will be justice for Tess.

  6. Mary R permalink

    I too was a classmate of Tess’ /we were in marching band together. He passing has troubled me for years We were all so frightened at the time it happened. I was reading that hair was found showing a genetic condition of minoxidil —I was curious if new DNA testing and ancestry info available might find the killer. Maybe there is nothing left but I still pray for her killer to be found. She was a vibrant sweet girl. I hope you find who did it one day. I am 69 now and that’s way too long for this person not to be found. God Bless Tess

    • Lovely comment. Thank you Mary. I believe we know who the killer is, but because it is still an open case only the law enforcement folks can issue a confirming statement. We are very fortunate to have such wonderful tipsters!

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