Mayberry Texas | A Catalyst Project | KXAN.com

The name "Mayberry" might have you whistling a familiar tune, recalling an iconic hometown — an American illusion full of neighborly warmth and absolute trust. But in reality, every town is full of secrets. In Kenedy, Texas, they include the whereabouts of a "cross-dresser" bearing that wistful appellation — James "Jamie" Mayberry. On April 1, 1999, the 35-year-old vanished from his home with a stranger. Local law enforcement almost immediately suggested Jamie simply wanted to leave, but his family's suspicions drew a massive search of the area that only ended with more questions. Two decades later, a KXAN investigation sparks a fresh look at the case, uncovering possible missteps by police in those early days. Our analysis of more than 5,600 missing persons also reveals shortfalls in the way Texas tackles those cases and prompts a state lawmaker's promise to improve the system, helping families looking for loved ones.

WATCH THE FIVE-PART SERIES

WATCH EACH CHAPTER USING THE ARROW BUTTONS BELOW.

If you have a tip in Jamie Mayberry's case, call Kenedy Police at (830) 583-2225 or the Texas Department of Public Safety at (512) 424-5074.

To learn more, view Mayberry's NamUs profile.