Holly Marie Clouse, also known as Baby Holly, was found in 2022 after her parents were murdered in Texas nearly 40 years ago and she disappeared. The investigation into her parents’ deaths are ongoing.
In October of 1980, Tina Gail Clouse, Harold Dean Clouse Jr. and their infant daughter Holly Marie Clouse relocated from New Smyrna Beach, Florida to Lewsiville, a suburb of Dallas, Texas.
Shortly after moving to Lewisville, the young family disappeared. In January of 1981, a dog returned to its home in a rural area east of Houston with a decomposed human arm in its mouth. After the police began a search, the remains of a couple were located in a forest nearby. According to the medical examiner, the man was beaten to death and the woman was strangled. Unfortunately, because the family was new to the area and genetic testing had not yet be invented, the couple’s bodies remained unidentified.
Unbeknownst to the officers, the couple’s infant daughter Holly had disappeared, as there was no evidence that the infant was there. Harold’s mother Donna, never gave up searching for the family.
In October 2021, the case was reopened and genetic genealogy was used in hopes to identify the couple. With this, investigators were finally able to determine that the remains belonged to Harold Dean Clouse Jr. and Tina Gail Clouse. That is when they also discovered that the couple had an infant daughter who had not been seen since their disappearance and murders. Though they had fears for the worst, investigators still searched in hopes that Baby Holly was alive.
Finally, on Tuesday, June 6, 2022, investigators found that Holly Marie Clouse was still alive, now 42 and living in Oklahoma. It was then discovered that after her parents’ murders, Holly was taken, most likely by her captors, and dropped off at a church in Arizona by 2 women who identified themselves as members of a nomadic religious group. The women were said to be wearing white robes and were barefoot. They claimed that some of their beliefs included: separation of male and female, vegetarian habits, and not using/wearing leather items. Furthermore, they did not state how they got the baby or where she came from.
Holly was eventually adopted by a family of the church. She grew up to get married and have 5 children. She has now been married for more than 20 years and has 2 grandchildren.
In late December 1980 or early January 1981, the couple’s family received a call from a woman in Los Angeles identifying herself as “Sister Susan” claiming that the couple joined their religious group, renounced their world possessions, and wanted no contact with their family. She offered to return the couple’s car to the family, and a date was arranged for the car’s return in Florida. A man and 3 women who brought the car were taken into custody in regards to the family’s disappearance. However, no case file about the arrests could be found.
Now that Holly Marie Clouse had been found alive and well, the family is one step closer to getting some closure. The next step is finding out who murdered Holly’s parents, and many questions still remain. Did they really join the religious cult, or were they just killed by the cult members? What cult is this? Who are these cultists? I think with the already known information and identification of the family, these questions are closer to being answered. I hope Holly and the rest of her family are healing after learning the news of what happened to Harold and Tina.