JOSHUA TREE — Good with fixing cars and doing hair. Kind to animals. A star in the kitchen. Tawny Hill’s mom remembers her daughter as a multi-talented woman who also loved to hike in the outdoors.
Hill went missing in May 2019. Friends and family put her photo on windows across Yucca Valley and Joshua Tree, but her disappearance remained a mystery until a hiker found her remains on a hillside in Joshua Tree’s Section 6 conservation land on Jan. 16.
This month, the detective investigating her missing persons case told them the bones were hers. Detective B. Henry confirmed that to the Hi-Desert Star.
There is no sign of foul play at this time, he said.
Tawny Hill had three brothers and was the middle of Cassandra Hill’s three daughters; the eldest, Tiffany, died a year and a half ago.
Tawny was also mother to a 19-year-old son.
When her middle daughter went missing, Cassandra Hill couldn’t think what had happened.
“It’s been hard, not knowing,” Hill said Wednesday in a phone interview.
From her home, she can see the mountain where Tawny was found, “but of course we never knew.”
Born in 1982, Tawny Hill and her family moved to Yucca Valley in 1990. Her mom remembers her as a generous child.
“She was a real hospitable person, always wanting to help,” Hill said. “As a kid, she would be the one to say, ‘Would you like something?’ if someone came to visit.”
She went to elementary school in Yucca Valley and was then home schooled before attending Copper Mountain College. “She was a smart girl. She always did well in school,” Hill said.
Tawny got her first job at 15, working at the Yucca Valley movie theater. Hill described her as a hard worker who gave a job her all.
At home, she had a variety of skills.
She was mechanical, working on her car and fixing things around the house.
“She also loved doing hair,” Hill said.
She’d recently helped her mom with a trick for taking color out of hair quickly and safely — baking soda and vitamin C.
“She was a good cook,” Hill added. “She really liked vegan food so she’d make really good vegan dishes.”
Tawny loved animals and didn’t eat meat. She doted on her dog, a rescue she named Spunky.
“She loved my fur grandbaby,” Hill said. “She loved her little Spunky boy.”
Family members are raising money for services at https://www.gofundme.com/f/rip-tawny-hill.