Unidentified Wiki

Joanne Dolly Burmer[1] was a woman whose skull fragment was found near the location of her disappearance in 1973. She was identified via DNA testing from the Nevada County Sheriff's Office in 2019.


Burmer disappeared on February 27, 1973, after being dropped off by friends near Highway 20 to snowshoe to a friend's cabin. She wasn't reported missing until March 8.

Following her disappearance, her three-year-old son Robert was adopted and renamed. Despite this, he maintained contact with Burmer's mother.

Authorities listed her disappearance as suspicious.


Two decades after Burmer disappeared, a skull fragment was located along the same highway in 1993. A man searching the area for firewood reported the find to police.

No cause of death has been released for the remains, although it is implied the cause and manner remain undetermined. The investigation stalled after the failure to identify the skull.


DNA was not extracted from the fragment until 2017. It was eventually compared to the profile obtained from Burmer's Son in August 2019. Following the identification, her son announced his plans to bury her cremated remains next to his grandmother.



  1. Burmer may have also used the last name "Norman." Some agencies referred to her as "Jo Anne."