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When an undelivered letter with a missing child's handwriting on it is found, the team is prompted to reopen the case of an eight-year-old girl who disappeared in 1975.


When a postman dies in his home, the homicide squad find bags of undelivered mail from 1975. In one of those bags is an undelivered letter from a missing eight-year-old girl to her best friend which could have saved her life.

The squad opens up the case of Melanie Campbell who disappeared one night in 1975, believed to have been taken from her bedroom. Rush visits Melanie's parents who still live in the same house. Her mother Frances believes Melanie is alive while her father Norman just wants his little girl to be buried. As Norman escorts Rush out, he tells her they are prisoners in the house since his wife won't leave, thinking Melanie will come home.

Will and Miller visit Terrell Pierce, who was one of the main suspects back in 1975, and his sister Cherise who was Melanie's best friend and the intended recipient of the newly discovered letter. Will and Miller find out that when the black Pierce family moved into the all-white neighborhood, it came with a lot of anger and hate as nobody wanted them living there. There's a mob chanting "leave, leave" as the family unpacks their moving van. Melanie and Cherise meet amid the tension. Melanie tells her new neighbor how fireflies are really fairies who live in heaven and from then on, they were best friends.

Will and Rush then interview Hank Wilson, who was the leader of the mob that wanted Terrell and Cherise out of town. He says that he had nothing to do with Melanie's disappearance and they should talk with Wes Floyd, a property developer who wanted all the whites to move into a new neighborhood so he could make a profit. Scotty and Nick then interview Wes, who admits he wanted the Campbells to move out of the neighborhood and made a menace of himself, but didn't have anything to do with Melanie. He says that if he wanted somebody to talk to, they should talk to the kids of the neighborhood because they really didn't like Cherise and Melanie being friends.

They speak to Dale Wilson, Hank Wilson's son, who tells them that he went to apologize to Melanie and Cherise after their confrontation at the bus stop. He finds the girls choosing a hiding place for their secret correspondence behind the drain pipe of Melanie's house. When Dale notices Melanie crying, Cherise explains that they overheard the adults talking about moving because they don't like "fireflies and bugs and stuff". Dale is confused until he sees that someone has vandalized the Campbells' house by painting a racist slur on it.

He is behind bars. Cherise and Melanie meet back up after all these years.


Main Cast[]

Guest Cast[]



  • Instead of putting the box with all the other closed cases, the team gets rid of the box, because the person never died. This is one of the five occurrences in the series in which the presumed victim was found alive (the others are The House, Joseph, The Road, & Ghost of My Child. In "The House" and "Joseph" the victims were dead, but the detectives were mistaken about their identities.)
  • The Smashing Pumpkins' version of the song "Landslide" was used in the finale of the season 3 episode Detention.


  • America "Tin Man"
  • Stevie Wonder "Living For The City"
  • The O'Jays "Love Train"
  • The Snaptones "Up Down Back Around"
  • Gladys Knight "The Best Thing That Ever Happened To Me"
  • Earth, Wind and Fire "That's The Way Of The World"
  • Closing Song: Fleetwood Mac "Landslide"


Opening Song[]

Alongside Songs[]

Closing Song[]

Season 4 Episodes
Rampage | The War at Home | Sandhogs | Baby Blues | Saving Sammy | Static | The Key | Fireflies | Lonely Hearts | Forever Blue | The Red and the Blue | Knuckle Up | Blackout | 8:03 AM | Blood on the Tracks | The Good-Bye Room | Shuffle, Ball Change | A Dollar, A Dream | Offender | Stand Up and Holler | Torn | Cargo | The Good Death | Stalker

See More Cases[]

v - e - tCold Case Logo
Season 1
Look AgainGleenOur Boy Is BackChurchgoing PeopleThe RunnerLove Conquers AlA Time to HateFly AwaySherry Darlin'The HitchhikerHubrisGluedThe LetterThe Boy in the BoxDisco InfernoVolunteersThe Lost Soul of Herman LesterResolutionsLate ReturnsGreedMaternal InstinctsThe PlanLover's Lane
Season 2
The BadlandsFactory GirlsDanielaThe HouseWho's Your Daddy?The SleepoverIt's Raining MenRed GlareMind HuntersDiscretionBlank GenerationYo, AdrianTime To CrimeRevolutionWishingRevengeSchadenfreudeRavagedStrange FruitKensingtonCreatures Of The NightBest FriendsThe Woods
Season 3
FamilyThe PromiseBad NightColorsCommittedSaving Patrick BubleyStart UpHonorA Perfect DayFrank's Best8 YearsDetentionDebutDog Day AfternoonsSanctuaryOne NightSuperstarWillkommenBeautiful Little FoolDeath Penalty: Final AppealThe Hen HouseThe RiverJoseph
Season 4
RampageThe War at HomeSandhogsBaby BluesSaving SammyStaticThe KeyFirefliesLonely HeartsForever BlueThe Red and the BlueKnuckle UpBlackout8:03 AMBlood on the TracksThe Good-bye RoomShuffle, Ball ChangeA Dollar, A DreamOffenderStand Up and Holler •  TornCargoThe Good DeathStalker
Season 5
Thrill KillThat WomanRunning AroundDevil MusicThick as ThievesWunderkindWorld's EndIt Takes a VillageBoy CrazyJusticeFamily 8108SabotageSpidersAndy in C MinorThe RoadBad ReputationSlippingGhost of My Child
Season 6
Glory DaysTrue CallingWednesday's WomenRoller GirlShore LeaveThe DealerOne Small StepTriple ThreatPin Up GirlStreet MoneyWingsLotto FeverBreaking NewsThe Brush ManWitness ProtectionJackalsOfficer DownMind GamesLibertyvilleStealing HomeNovember 22ndThe Long Blue LineInto the Blue
Season 7
The CrossingHoodratsJurisprudenceSoulWASPDead HeatRead Between the LinesChinatownForensicsIcedThe Good SoldierThe Runaway BunnyBombersMetamorphosisTwo WeddingsOne FallFlashoverLast Drive-InBulletFree LoveAlmost ParadiseShattered