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Police Searching for Massachusetts Mom Who Disappeared After Midnight on New Year’s, Days Before Her Former House Burned Down

Ana Walshe appears in a photograph shared by the Cohasset Police Department

Ana Walshe is seen in an undated, police-provided photograph.

A Massachusetts woman and mother of three went missing during the early morning hours of New Year’s Day. Less than a week later, the house she previously lived in burned to the ground.

Police in Cohasset, a town about 45 minutes southeast of Boston, are still searching for 39-year-old Ana Walshe as of this weekend, according to local Fox affiliate WXFT.

Law enforcement is currently not convinced the fire at the house on Jerusalem Road is connected to Walshe and the flight she never took from – or the rideshare she was supposed to take to – Logan Airport.

“At this point it’s a missing person investigation,” Cohasset Police Chief William Quigley said during a Friday press conference reported by Boston-based NBC affiliate WBTS. “We’re just trying to locate Ana and get her home safely. We have nothing to support anything suspicious or criminal.”

The police chief also said that his department was working with a task force of various law enforcement agencies, including the Massachusetts State Police, “around the clock” on the case.

Quigley said the missing woman was last seen by a family member at her home around 4:00 or 5:00 a.m. on Jan. 1, 2023. Authorities have determined that she had a ticket to Washington D.C. for Jan. 3, 2023 but was called to work earlier due to an emergency. Walshe is the executive of a D.C.-based real estate management company.

On Wednesday, Jan. 3, 2023, the CPD received “simultaneous reports” from Walshe’s husband and her employer concerned about her whereabouts, the police chief said.

“It’s not normal that she’s missing so we automatically feel like she’s in danger from the mere fact that she’s missing,” Quigley added. “Other than that, there’s no evidence to support anything illegal. We’re just trying to locate and get her home safely.”

Neither Walshe’s cellular phone nor her credit cards have been used since she mysteriously vanished, police said.

“So far there’s been no electronic footprint at all,” Quigley told reporters.

Walshe is reportedly of slight build, standing at 5’2″ and weighing some 115 pounds. She is said to have brown hair and eyes, an olive complexion, and to speak with an Eastern European accent. She has three boys between the ages of two and six years old.

“Sometimes life gets chaotic,” Quigley said – suggesting that perhaps the stress of the holidays had gotten to the mother. “If that’s the case, we need a call from her or someone who has talked to her.”

One friend hotly disputed that notion.

“She loves her family, and I know in my heart that of her choice, she would not go a day without speaking to her husband and her kids,” Alissa Kirby told Boston ABC affiliate WCVB. “Honestly, I’m scared. Really, really scared,”

As of Saturday afternoon, authorities appeared to substantially diminish any connection between the disappearance and the fire.

On Friday afternoon, Jan. 5, 2023, firefighters in Cohasset responded to a blaze at the former Walshe home. Ana Walshe and her family moved out last April – after selling the residence in March 2022. Quigley said authorities determined the fire was not suspicious, that it started in the attic, and that the emergency call was made by a current occupant of the home, according to WXFT. All four members of the house – three adults and one child – got out safely, police said.

“Cohasset and State Investigators determined that this fire was not suspicious,” the Massachusetts Office of the State Fire Marshal told the TV station. “It originated in the area of damaged piping connected to a natural gas fireplace insert.”

[Image via Cohasset Police Department]

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