‘You don’t even know how to feel’: Daughter of missing Hanson woman wants answers

“I want to remain hopeful, but, at the same time, it’s been a long time.”

Sandra Crispo
Sandra Crispo. –Courtesy of the Hanson Police Department

In the six months since her mother, Sandra Crispo, went missing from her Hanson home, Laina McMahon has struggled with the array of emotions surrounding her disappearance, and what to tell her young children.

It’s also been challenging to stay hopeful that her mother could still be alive.

“The more time that passes, you want to be hopeful,” McMahon told Boston.com in a recent interview. “I want to remain hopeful, but, at the same time, it’s been a long time.”

Crispo, 54, went missing on Aug. 7, leaving a trail of unanswered questions. Police don’t suspect foul play, and McMahon said it isn’t like her mother to just take off.

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The last time McMahon knew her mother’s whereabouts was on that Wednesday, Aug. 7, when Crispo watched her children. On Thursday, McMahon was unable to get in touch with her. Then Friday came, and Crispo was scheduled to watch her grandchildren again. She couldn’t be found.

“That’s when I discovered her lights were on, her backdoor was unlocked,” McMahon said. “There was no sign of her. She didn’t have a cell phone, she didn’t have a computer, but it’s definitely not like her to, you know, leave.”

There were other things in Crispo’s home that makes McMahon think she didn’t just leave. There were watermelon slices and juice boxes in the refrigerator in preparation for her grandchildren’s visit that Friday. There was a note on her bedroom dresser to buy McMahon a birthday gift since her birthday was coming up — and another note written to remind Crispo that one of her grandchildren’s birthdays was at the end of that month.

Missing person notifications went out from police, and a vigil was held to spread the word. McMahon created a website dedicated to the search, with multiple photos of her mother and a physical description.

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But answers haven’t surfaced. The six months without Crispo have been long, her daughter said. Crispo had moved to Hanson three months prior to her disappearance from Quincy so she could be closer to McMahon and her family. McMahon described her mother as quiet with “a small network of friends and family.”

McMahon just wants answers, but she’s also had to learn to trust the process, she said. For her small children, she and her husband, Tim, have been telling them that their Granny is missing, and they can’t find her. They still ask for her, McMahon said.

“It’s awful,” she said. “You don’t even know how to feel. You can’t really accept it because you don’t know.”

The Plymouth County District Attorney’s Office told Boston 25 News that the investigation is ongoing. 

“There’s points where it’s frustrating because you just want the answers,” McMahon said, adding that she believes authorities are doing all they can.

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