WALNUT CREEK, CALIFORNIA: Erika Ashley Lloyd was last seen in June at her home in Walnut Creek, before she went for a solo road trip, dubbed “pandemic road trip”. It’s been more than three months, no one knows her whereabouts. PEOPLE reported that the 37-year-old mother set out for a trip to Joshua Tree National Park, but she never returned. The San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department said that on June 14, she told her roommates that she was going to meet people at the park. However, when her family was not able to contact her for two days, they filed a missing person report on June 17.
Investigators working on the case are yet to discover the identities of the people Erika said she was going to meet. They have only found her camping supplies and her deserted and damaged black Honda Accord on a local road outside the park, near the town of Twentynine Palms. Though some of Erika’s friends believe she has not disappeared on her own and there’s something fishy, investigators do not believe the same. Her parents also think she got injured in some accident. “We don’t know if she had some memory loss when she got hit by the airbag. Maybe she doesn’t know who she is, we don’t know, we aren’t sure about her mental stage,” Ruth Lloyd, Erika’s mother, said.
In July, a GoFundMe page was also created for her, which read, “She is a business owner/hairstylist/makeup artist, a mama, a daughter, a sister, an auntie, and a friend. We have one goal in mind and that is to bring her home. If you feel led please donate to help aid in bringing our girl home. We are also asking for continued prayers for Erika, the police investigation, her son and for the family at this time. Thank you for your generosity and prayers during this time!”
Family of Erika told KESQ that she wanted to go on the trip to relax her mind. She was reportedly facing hardships during the Covid-19 pandemic. Being a single mother and owner of a small business, things were reportedly getting tough for her. Ruth said, “She seemed like she was fine. Being in lockdown for almost three months, not being able to work and she was trying to home school her son. It was starting to get to her, the pressure and not having any income.”
While no one has seen or heard from Erika for months, a man named Martin Cox, who has a home in the desert, claimed that he saw a woman appearing to be the same as her at a rest stop west of the park three days after she was reported missing. Speaking with PEOPLE, Cox said: “It was kind of odd. She’s just staring off toward the west. She didn’t have a purse or any luggage. There was no one around, and she wasn’t marked up — no bruises, no scratches.”
Cox said after returning home, when he saw a pamphlet for Erika, showing her tattoos, he became convinced that it was her. He immediately called the police. “That sold me. It was her,” he added. Reports have stated that Erika is 5 feet 4 inches tall and her weight is approximately 125 lbs. She has dark brown hair and blue eyes.
Police have urged anyone with any information related to her to call the Walnut Creek Police Department or the Morongo Basin station of the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department at 760-366-4175.