Richard "Ricky" Izard Jr. was born on March 17, 1952, the first child of Richard and Lisa Izard of Yoknapatawpha County. His sister, LeAnne Izard, was born three years later on June 21, 1955.
Their mother, Lisa Izard, was a trained nurse and homemaker. Their father was the plant foreman at the Bowlan Glove Factory near Oxford.
Ricky was a precocious youth, interested in science, sports, and nature, and he thrived in Cub Scout Troop #57, which met at his family's church, Bethlehem Primitive Baptist.
He attended first grade at Theora Hamblett Elementary and rode the bus home each afternoon. During the first grade, he lost his two top front teeth and sported a gummy grin in his school pictures.
LeAnne Izard was an active, mischievous child, always pulling on the tablecloth and upsetting the table settings, trying to swipe cookies from the cupboard, and generally blundering into all areas of the house.
At one and a half, she accidentally locked herself in the bathroom and had managed to flood the tub and flush the family's toothbrushes down the toilet before her father could pick the lock and retrieve her. On her second birthday, she wanted to hug her cake because she loved it so much, and she wrapped her arms around the chocolate cake before anyone could stop her.
When she was just two months shy of her third birthday, LeAnne still got plopped into her old playpen in the Izards' big country kitchen whenever her mom wanted her safely corralled for nap time or while Mrs. Izard was particularly busy with household chores.
Ricky and LeAnne were reported missing on Friday, April 11, 1958, the day that their parents were found murdered at their home. Richard and Lisa Izard appeared to have been killed by one or more people wielding the Izards' own garden tools.
The children were not located despite massive search efforts of nearby fields, forests, creeks, and ponds, and even the old hobo shacks out near the railroad tracks a few miles away.
At the murder scene, traces of dirt suggested that the toddler, LeAnne, was taken from her playpen in the kitchen. Ricky rode the school bus home that day, and his red and blue school bookbag was later found in a crook of the long driveway. There was no obvious sign of a struggle near the bookbag.
The only leads in their missing persons case were a torn and dirty baby blanket and Ricky's cap found on April 16, 1958, both washed downstream in the large creek in the pasture next to the Izard's property.
Officials speculated that the boy struck out on his own with his sister to get help when he found the murder scene and that the two somehow accidentally drowned because the boy was panicked. However, the children's bodies were never found.