When an old truck containing human bones is pulled from the Delaware River, the team re-opens the case of a missing and possibly murdered girl who disappeared unexpectedly in 1932. Detectives Rush and Valens discover that the truck was owned by a 1930s era bootlegger during Prohibition, prompting an investigation that leads to the supposedly dead sister of the vehicle's owner, and the revelation of a long-buried love affair.
When a submerged, bullet-riddled truck is pulled up from a river, the cold case team will solve their coldest case to date--70 years.
The truck is registered to a bootlegger, and since the remains were female, it is first believed to be those of his sister. When it is discovered that they are of African American descent, this leads the team to a love story way before its time.
Rush and the team manage to track down the sister, who is still alive, and this is where they learn the story of Rose Collins and Billie Ducette. Rose is the sister of a bootlegger, Curtis Collins who always travels with his sister (they're orphans), as he delivers liquor to a club where the music draws her in. As she is sitting in the truck enjoying the music, she sees an African American girl who changes into men's clothing and then enters the club. Since her brother doesn't allow her to enter the club she returns later without him. When she goes up to the bar and orders a drink she is sitting next to the owner and the "mysterious" girl. The owner trys to tell her that this is no place for her and her brother would be furious if he knew she was there. Rose states she has paid for a drink and has a right to be there and enjoy the music. After seeing the girl light a cigarette, she asks for one and the girl tells her she doesn't have anymore. She gets one from the owner and upon lighting it coughs which causes the girl to snicker at her. The girl than makes fun of her and tells her she really needs to leave, and drinks Rose's drink which causes her to timidly leave the club.
Then as Rose is leaving school one day the girl is waiting outside for her. Rose says something to her about being in a skirt and the girl, whose name is Billie, tells her that she cleans houses and that is how she has to dress. As they continue walking and talking, Rose learns that Billie used to "go with" this other girl which causes Rosie to blush and say she's dating someone too: Ted. They see this other girl standing at the corner and Billie tells Rose to leave. The team tracks down the "other woman" since they learn she carried a gun and the truck was full of bullet holes. They cannot connect her to the murder.
In the end, they learned of a blossoming romance between Rose and Billie through poetry written by Billie to Rose and Rose's confession of her love. This causes her decide to run away with Billie by stealing some of her brother's liquor because Billie had been beaten badly by her now ex-boyfriend, Ted and his friends. When they're caught by Curtis, he wants to kill Billie and forces Rose to get his shotgun, which she then uses to help her and Billie escape. Curtis chases after them and shoots at the truck with no luck. They come to a sign that declares the bridge is out and decide to go over the edge into the river. Rosie re-surfaces, but Billie does not.
The last scene where a team member, family member, or someone very close to the victim usually "sees" the victim, as they are satisfied their murder has been solved, instead shows older aged Rosie approached by younger Billie who then walk off hand in hand through the park...This leaves you to wonder if Rose died on the bench she was sitting on and is greeted by Billie, her first and only true love.
- Kathryn Morris as Lilly Rush
- Danny Pino as Scotty Valens
- John Finn as John Stillman
- Jeremy Ratchford as Nick Vera
- Thom Barry as Will Jeffries
- Piper Laurie as Rose Collins (2005)
- Tom Bower as Curtis Collins (2005)
- Marla Gibbs as Little Georgie (2005)
- Samantha Streets as Rose Collins (1932)
- Tessa Thompson as Billie Ducette
- Tom Wright as Winsor "Doc Win" Watson
- Susan Chuang as Frannie Ching
- Shelley Robertson as Lena
- Johnathan Tchaikovsky as Curtis Collins (1932)
- Linara Washington as Celia Watson
- This is the third oldest case in the series, and the oldest case in this season.
- Michael Levine's composition "Best Friends" is featured throughout the episode. In the closing sequence, an original poem is heard over the score. The song can be found on the Cold Case soundtrack.
- This is the first episode to use an original composition during the closing sequence.
- Nobody gets arrested in this episode, since the death was ruled as a suicide. This was second suicide case, after "Daniela".
- This episode won a GLAAD Media Award.
- Debut of Tessa Thompson.
- Will Jeffries turns 60 in this episode. This contradicts the episode Strange Fruit, where his age is worked out to be 54.
- The episode begins with the usual disclaimer "The following story is fictional and does not depict any actual person or event", however the episode does depict an actual person: Billie Holiday.
- Ethel Waters with Ben Slavin "I Got Rhythm"
- Billie Holiday "Trav'lin All Alone"
- Ivie Anderson with Duke Ellington "It Don't Mean A Thing (If It Ain't Got That Swing)"
- Bessie Smith "Nobody Knows You When You're Down and Out"
- Closing song: Michael A. Levine "Best Friends"