Monique Smith, formerly known as Simboli Ruffin, has dedicated decades to advocating for missing and abducted children, drawing from her own extraordinary life story. Labeled “The Longest Living Jane Doe,” Smith, a Baltimore businesswoman and mother of four, emerged from a traumatic childhood marked by abuse and was raised by the woman she believed was her mother in West Baltimore.
Enduring severe mistreatment, Smith’s quest for her true identity began in her late 20s when she discovered she couldn’t even prove her maternity due to the absence of a birth certificate. Over years of relentless research, reaching out to authorities, and even private detectives, Smith faced inconsistent and misleading information about her birth year, name variations, and more. It became apparent that the woman who raised her had intentionally obscured her identity by changing information multiple times.
Smith’s determination led her to a breakthrough when a Maryland detective enlisted genetic genealogist CeCe Moore’s help. Through DNA analysis, Smith connected with her biological family, discovering her mother’s name, potential father’s name, siblings’ names, and even details like the hospital of her birth. Her biological mother, a teenage mom with a challenging life, passed away at 34.
Reuniting with her long-lost sisters and obtaining her birth certificate, Smith continues her journey to change her name legally. Despite the uncertainties surrounding her early life, she uses her story to raise awareness about missing children and inspire hope. With a newfound sense of identity, she plans to travel in 2024, emphasizing the importance of persistence in the search for missing children.