New York City, NY

The Young Boy Who Came Out As Gay And Disappeared. Where Is Eddie Tillman?

The Vivid Faces of the Vanished
Edmund "Eddie" TillmanThe Charley Project

Our youth today are facing many challenges in our ever-changing world.

One of the challenges many teens are battling is the perception of them when exposing their sexuality.

14-year old New Yorker Edmond Tillman, who has three sisters, was one of those teens.

Edmond, affectionately known as Eddie, has a doting mother who loves her child and accepts her son's sexuality, reports The Charley Project.

Around June 2005, Edmond came out to his mother, Alelia Newsome, as gay. His mother said this was around the same time she noticed some changes in her son.

Edmund began having issues in school and coming home later and later, reports The Charley Project.

On August 10, 2005, his mother dropped him off in Manhattan around 7:00 pm. Edmund was going to take a test to determine if he could advance to the eighth grade.

She has never seen Edmund again.

After Edmund vanished, his mother discovered her son was using the internet to communicate with older men.

She discovered there may have been an 18-year old Edmund was romantically involved with.

According to The Charley Project, there were sightings of Eddie in the West Village portion of Manhattan.

“One of the little boys said they saw him on a train, and he was with an older man,” Alelia Newsome told Pix 11. “He said he said to Eddie, ‘Eddie, why don’t you go home?’ … And he said he wasn’t ready to go home yet.”

Detective Michael McDonough told Pix 11 Eddie may have been concerned about being accepted as gay by his family.

“And they have anxiety over how they feel and how they believe they’re being viewed,” McDonough said, according to Pix 11. “But this is 2021. That was 2005.”
Edmund "Eddie" TillmanThe Charley Project

According to Pix 11, Alelia would often sleep in her car near West Fourth Street or Chrystie Street near local parks in Manhattan looking for Eddie.

In 2017, a family friend contacted Amelia.

“He said he saw Eddie down in the Village (Greenwich Village), and he said Eddie was dressed as a girl,” Alelia said, according to Pix 11.

One of Eddie's sisters, Keyeara Newsome, told Pix 11 she and Eddie were best friends growing up.

“I just feel like my family is ready for him to come back,” she told Pixx 11. “Even if he is dressed as a girl, I’m ready for him to be my best friend and go out with me, as a girl.”

“We have heard that, in the past, that he did crossdress,” Detective McDonough said, according to Pix 11. “It’s never been verified.”

According to Pix 11, the family has received mysterious phone calls over the years, said Eddie's older sister Jhalisa Tillman.

“Strangely, around holidays, and when my dad passed away and my grandmother passed away,” reports Pix 11.

Jhalisa, according to Pix 11, said people claiming to be old friends would ask if the family had found Eddie.

She said someone named Stephanie often called the family from the Lower East Side, reports Pix 11.

“There’s just so many unanswered questions,” she added, reports Pix 11. “How did you get the number? Why do you call randomly? … I want to believe it’s him kind of checking up on us … in a disguise.”

Eddie's younger sister, Patricia Newsome, looks very similar to her brother, according to Pix 11.

She remembers dancing to their favorite R&B hits together, including "Waterfalls", the TLC hit, reports Pix 11.

“Twins,” Patricia said, reports Pix 11. “That was my twin.”

Patricia is hopeful her brother Eddie will see his family is searching for him.

“Just come home,” she pleaded, according to Pix 11.

“I just want him to make it home to us … I just pray and beg every day,” Alelia Newsome told Pix 11. “I don’t care if he’s dressed as a woman … I love my son for who he is.”

Edmund "Eddie" Tillman was 5'3" and weighed 135-145 pounds when he disappeared.

Please contact the New York Police Department at 646-610-5000 with any information.
Edmund "Eddie" Tillman Age ProgressionThe Charley Project

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