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Bertolas was last seen sometime in 1988 at the Red Carpet Lanes bowling alley in the 10900 block of west Lapham Street in West Allis, Wisconsin. She was planning to confront her boyfriend; as she found out he had been seeing someone else and also that he had given her a false last name and home address. Bertolas has never been seen again. Her vehicle, which was her prized possession, was found abandoned in the parking lot of the Red Carpet Lanes on April 27. No evidence as to her fate was located inside the car.
Police believe foul play was involved in Bertolas's case, possibly at the hands of her boyfriend, who now works as a firefighter. Prosecutors conducted a 21-month John Doe probe into the case in 2002 and over fifty witnesses testified, but the probe concluded without any charges being filed, due to insufficient evidence.
Bertolas, the youngest of eight children, resided with her parents in Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin at the time of her disappearance. She was a student at Waukesha County Technical College and worked-part time as a beautician at a Cost Cutters hair salon in 1988. Her father died in 2010, but the rest of her family is still alive and hope she'll be found. Her loved ones believe she's deceased and have purchased a cemetery plot for her next to her father's grave.