GRANBY, MASS. (WHDH) - Officials on Monday said they identified a homicide victim in a cold case dating back nearly 45 years. 

The remains of Patricia Ann Tucker, long known as the “Granby Girl,” were found in 1978. Decades later, officials said genetic testing helped them identify Tucker’s remains. 

Investigators said Tucker married Gerald Coleman the year before she disappeared. They said he never reported his wife missing. 

Now, officials said he is a person of interest in this case. 

Officials said Coleman was later arrested on other charges.

Coleman was convicted in 1995. He died one year later in prison. Officials have since asked anyone with information about Coleman or his wife’s murder to come forward. 

“There may be people out there who know something about either one of them that could help further this investigation,” Northwestern First Assistant District Attorney Steven Gagne said in a press conference on Monday. 

“While it’s satisfying to finally know who ‘Granby Girl’ actually was, the investigation won’t stop until we identify her killer and bring the family an additional measure of closure and justice,” Gagne separately said in a statement. “This investigation has spanned decades, and will continue until each and every possible lead is explored.”

The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner ruled Tucker’s cause of death to be a bullet wound to the temple. 

Officials said the process of later identifying her “proved troublesome,” though. 

Officials said they began working with a private Houston-based forensic laboratory roughly two years ago. They ultimately learned Tucker’s identity by tracing relatives from a DNA profile using forensic genetic genealogy. 

Officials said they were able to find Tucker’s adult son, obtaining a 100% parent/child match when they compared his DNA to Tucker’s. 

The son, Matthew Dale was just five years old when Tucker disappeared, officials said. 

Dale issued a statement following the identification of his mother’s remains, thanking those involved in identification efforts. 

“Thank you for never giving up on her,” he said, in part. 

“It’s a lot of process, but hopefully, the closure can begin now,” he continued. 

The Northwestern District Attorney’s office asked anyone with information about this case to contact the Granby Police Department by phone at 413-467-9222, by email  at, or by submitting a message through their website.

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