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Sonoma Family Life Magazine

Missing in Forever 21

By Katy M. Clark

Jennifer Smith, 50, was reported missing from Midtown Mall on Friday afternoon at approximately 3:43 p.m. Smith was last seen shopping inside Forever 21 with her teenage daughter.

“This was her dream, to come to Forever 21 and buy stuff to make me happy,” Smith’s daughter, 14, told the outlet. Forever 21 is a retail store that caters to teens and twenty-somethings.

“We were browsing the crop top section and I heard my mom mumble something about muffin tops,” her daughter said. “I went to look at the micro minis and that’s the last I remember seeing her.”

Smith, a former Fulbright Scholar to Mozambique and a 1993 graduate of Yale University, stands nearly six feet tall and reportedly wears a size 12. Thus, her disappearance within the store is not only alarming but also surprising.

Security officer Jethro Blart’s review of the store’s security camera footage confirmed Smith’s presence in the store. “The footage shows Ms. Smith towering over the clothing racks while shaking her head,” he announced. 

Blart, who recently watched a YouTube video on lip reading, claims Smith said, “Who could fit into these?” while holding up a pair of short shorts to her left thigh. According to Blart, the short shorts and Smith’s thigh were of similar diameter. “In case that helps find her because she’s that big,” he stated.

An examination of store records indicates that Smith used her credit card to purchase $86 worth of items, all in size small. A sales associate remembers assisting the teenage daughter during checkout but has no recollection of Smith.

“I remember the girl because she was wearing this totes adorbs lanyard,” said Ava L., sales associate in training. 

“There might have been someone who requested a printed receipt that day,” Ava L. continued. She said this was memorable since most patrons skip the paper receipt and get it sent directly to their phones instead. 

Ava L. suggested that mall security guards check Talbots or Chico’s. “That’s where my grandma shops.”

When Smith’s husband was reached for comment, he was unaware that his wife was missing. “I didn’t even know [my wife and daughter] left the house,” he said. “I was watching the game.”

Anyone with information about Ms. Smith is urged to contact the mall’s security guards. 

Update: Ms. Smith was found safe inside Forever 21 at 3:49 p.m. She was reviewing a paper receipt near the cash register while wearing reading glasses, which had rendered her unremarkable. Forever 21 appreciates the assistance of the mall security force in this matter and will consider instituting Midlife Consumer Awareness training for its employees.

This post was originally published on Sammiches and Psych Meds

Katy Clark writes about motherhood at