ELUSIVE JUSTICE: The Story of Ricky Beard and Mary Leonard

The series: Forty years ago, Akron teenage sweethearts Ricky Beard and Mary Leonard went on a date — and were never seen again. Six years later, their remains were found. The city’s most intense missing persons case became an unsolved homicide. Many theories emerged, but the mystery has never been solved. To mark the anniversary, the Beacon Journal/Ohio.com is collaborating with Ohio Mysteries podcast to share Ricky and Mary's story.

The stories:

Day 1 (Saturday): Two Akron teens go on a date — and vanish

Day 2 (Sunday): A gruesome discovery deepens the mystery

Day 3 (Monday): Police theories morph over four decades

Online extras:

Each day, visit Ohio.com for podcasts, maps, interactive timelines and documents from the case.

The journalists:

Paula Schleis: Retired reporter at the Beacon Journal, who now co-produces Ohio Mysteries, www.ohiomysteries.com/. She can be reached at feedback@ohiomysteries.com.

Stephanie Warsmith: Reporter at the Beacon Journal. She can be reached at swarsmith@thebeaconjournal.com.

Mike Cardew: Photographer at the Beacon Journal.

Steve Yoder: Co-producer of Ohio Mysteries.

Cheryl Powell and Scott Babbo: Managing editor/news and copy editor at the Beacon Journal.