Victim’s family seeks answers

The family of Merrilee Cooley, 68, of Portland, who was reported missing on Dec. 28, 2016 still seeks answers in regard to her death.

Her body was found Jan. 5, 2017. Cooley was the mother of Bryan Eilers, of Lebanon.

“We would like people to know that it is still not solved,” said Wendy Eilers, Bryan’s wife. “The person (or people) who committed this crime are still out there.”

Cooley’s body was found in the trunk of her vehicle at an apartment complex near SE Lark Street and SE Whitcomb Drive in the city of Milwaukie.

On the day it was discovered she was missing, a friend went to check on Cooley, they discovered her house ransacked, her purse dumped out, the house completely unlocked, her slipper outside, and furniture overturned.

Her car, a black 2010 Kia Optima, also was gone.
She used a walker and wheelchair to get around and both of those were left at the house along with her life alert necklace, her cell phone and wallet.

Crime-Stoppers has offered a $2,500 reward for information leading to an arrest, Eilers said.

“To anyone who has information who isn’t coming forward, I will say this: Think about if this was your mother, grandmother, sister, friend,” Eilers said. “Wouldn’t you want justice served? Anyone holding information back is just as guilty as the person or people who committed this crime in our opinion.”

The Clackamas County Sheriff’s Office may be contacted at (503) 723-4949. The CCSO Case number is 16-35366.