CHICAGO — Through song and art, the loved ones of Sheena Gibbs are fighting to find her.
The 40-year-old Gibbs was last seen six months ago near Greenleaf and Sheridan in Rogers Park, her neighborhood of more than two decades.
“I remember the last words that she said to me is, ‘I love you Aunt Nita’ and that just rings in my head over and over and over,” aunt Vernita Oliver told WGN News.
Oliver says Gibbs, a cancer survivor, loved to dance.
“It’s almost like she meets no strangers because she loves everyone,” she said.
The social justice activist most recently worked at the University of Illinois Chicago, performing Covid test scheduling, when she disappeared last November.
The weeks since have been agony for her family.
“Her mother at this very minute is in the hospital in Iowa City, blind from anguish, from pain,” uncle Anthony Griffin said.
The family hopes the unveiling of a mural of Gibbs at the Glenwood Bar just four blocks from where she was last seen will shine a new spotlight on her case. Damon Lamar Reed is with the Still Searching Project.
“Sometimes we see photos and just kind of you know go past it, so I thought by creating an artistic interpretation that would help to put more eyes on it,”
Reed paints Chicago’s missing Black women and girls.
“Black women make up 15% of the population but made up over 30% of the missing women in 2021,” said Ald. Maria Hadden (49th Ward). “Our cases, our stories, our lives are underrepresented.”
Gibbs’ family is raising money on GoFundMe to hire a private detective and asking anyone with information about her disappearance to come forward.
“Somebody knows where Sheena’s at,” Griffin said. “Somebody knows what’s happened to her and somebody should say something.”
Added Oliver: “We will never stop looking for you. We love you.”
Authorities are offering a $1,000 reward for information on Gibb’s whereabouts. Anyone with a tip can call Cook County Crime Stoppers at 800-535-STOP(7867).