Vanessa Guillen vanishes from post at Fort Hood: Part 1

Guillen’s family said she had dreams of serving her country in the military since a young age. On April 22, 2020, her family noticed she wasn’t answering text messages or calls.
8:46 | 06/12/21

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Transcript for Vanessa Guillen vanishes from post at Fort Hood: Part 1
So please promise me you'll find me, you'll find me Which way do we go? So, we go straight past the green light, okay. So that's the school over here. Mm-hmm. Did Vanessa like school? It seems like only yesterday to you that she was here. You ran with her? In her athletic pictures, she seemed very happy. Vanessa's 20 years old. She was born and raised in Houston, Texas, one of six children. That's Vanessa right in the middle. Her parents are immigrants from Mexico. Mom, Gloria, took care of the kids while dad, Rogelio, worked as a machine operator. The Guillen family is catholic and very religious. This is the baptism. That's your favorite? Si. When Houston went on lockdown, she was really, like, frustrated, because all the gyms are closed. And she would be like, let me carry you so I can do squats. And I was like, okay. And she will be like -- she will carry on her shoulders, and she will make, like, squats. I always looked up to her. And she used to be, like, be like me. Like, be tough and ignore everyone. She's this girl who just dreams of a better life. She has this fierce sense of patriotism, so she enlists into the army before she graduates from Cesar Chavez high school. In her first training, she didn't even want to come back. She was that happy. Even when she got home she was, like, a new person. She was -- like, her skin was literally growing. She was even happier that she was going to be stationed in Texas, close to home. Vanessa was sent to ft. Hood. She was stationed there as an active duty soldier, and she would make the trek every weekend to visit her family in Houston. That's about a three-hour drive. Ft. Hood is in the middle of nowhere Texas. Tumble weeds rolling, vast spaces. Known as the great place. Ft. Hood is big. It's the army's largest military installation. It's like the New York City. Vanessa was a small arms repair soldier. So her responsibilities included ensuring weapons were maintained, helping with accountability and inventories. That was her job. What do we have here? As soon as she got to the unit, we were, like, friends immediately. She didn't talk to too many people, but I guess apparently I'm, like, kind of funny some times. And like, she would always -- she'd crack up all the time. Like, her laugh was very, very I was one of Vanessa's closest friends. Sometimes we'll go, like, run, like, three miles or a few miles. And she would always beat me. And soon after Vanessa goes to ft. Hood, her family says they notice a change in her. You started seeing her eye bags. You start seeing she didn't want to eat. She started getting skinny again. She looks for sad? She was not happy at ft. Hood. No. She would try to tell me that she didn't want to be at ft. Hood. I remember this one time she said, I don't like it here. And I hope one day you understand. Around October, knowing that my sister was homing home, I was there. And she just came in, she closed the door, and she just started crying on her bed. I'm like, you just came from work, why are you crying? But I couldn't ask her because I wasn't in the position of asking her are you okay, because she's already old. But now in that moment I feel like I should have asked her. That could have been my opportunity. In mid-march, Vanessa gets engaged. Her family says she's happy and she's ready to move on with her life. I knew she was the one. She was beside me. She was just smiling, looking at her parents. We were all happy. And she told me, I love you, goodnight. Then the next day she woke up like at 5:00 in the morning to leave to ft. Hood. I remember I was still asleep. I remember she gave me a kiss, and she left. On the 22nd, I find out that she's not replying at all. No phone calls, they go straight to voicemail. So I was, like, well, let me message her. Maybe the messages go through. And nothing. And I know she doesn't turn off her phone. 8:00 P.M., it's been hours since the family has heard from Vanessa. Her sister, Mayra, takes action. That's when I decided to start calling the base. And they told me that they hadn't seen her since about lunchtime that day. And I'm sitting there, like, it's already been more than six I'm like, and nobody knows where she is. That's when he tells me, oh, we did send her for a report and she never made it back. And I'm like, and you're so calm about this. I called my mom and my dad. We sat down at the dinner table and I told them, I have to tell you something. She was like, I have to work in a bit, and that was the last message. I told them, I just called the base. They don't know where she is. And it's just silent. How could she go missing on a military base? That's so ridiculous. She wouldn't just walk away.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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