09/20/2012 07:52 EDT | Updated 11/20/2012 05:12 EST

Family of woman missing 24 years hopes for 'miracle'

The family of a woman from the Montreal suburb of Mascouche who disappeared 24 years ago spent part of Wednesday canvassing the town's streets, hoping a $10,000 reward for information about her may yield new leads.

Melanie Temperton was 20 years old in 1988 when she went to Montreal for an evening and never came home.

Her mother, Gwen Temperton, said her daughter failed to show up for work. That's when she called police.

"She went out one night and called me in the evening to let me know that she wouldn't be home that night," Temperton said.

"Getting back and forth from the city was hard, so she told me she was going to be staying with a friend, so I didn't panic. The next day I didn't hear from her, and the next evening I started to say, 'This is strange, she didn't call me today.' And then later on that evening, I said to my husband, 'Something's not right here, she always calls.'

"The next morning I knew something was wrong."

The Tempertons haven't seen their daughter since.

Missing persons case

The Sûreté du Québec is also looking for information about Melanie Temperton, but are still treating it as a missing-person case and not a crime.

But Gwen Temperton is certain that her daughter didn't just walk away from her life.

"She's not a runaway. There's no reason for her to do that," she said.

Volunteers, family and friends fanned out on residential streets in Mascouche on Wednesday, sticking up door-knob hangers bearing the picture of a smiling Temperton from long ago.

The $10,000 reward for information is being put forward by an anonymous donor. Pina Arcamone of the Missing Childrens' Network, which is helping in the search, said she hopes the money will encourage people to talk.

"Perhaps someone very close to this person that might have seen something that night, was witness to something, might have heard something as well, will finally come forward," she said.

Gwen Temperton said she just wants to know what happened to her daughter.

"All I want is to have news from her. That would be a miracle for me. And I would be able to give up this horror story that I'm living."