Holding out hope

Posted at: 05/07/2013 5:21 PM
Updated at: 05/07/2013 6:04 PM
By: Ray Levato

The news about three young women in Ohio, found after being held captive for years, brings to mind Chili's Brittanee Drexel, who's been missing for four years. She vanished while on Spring Break in Myrtle Beach.

There's also the case of Brian Sullivan, of Chili, who mysteriously disappeared seven years ago.

Police in South Carolina have tracked down hundreds of leads in the disappearance of 17-year-old Brittanee Drexel. But the one lead they need to break this case has been elusive.

Brian Sullivan was 19-years-old when he disappeared without a trace. Sullivan was last seen at a Burger King in Gates in July 2007. Sheriff's Deputies later found his abandoned car locked near a wooded area with his wallet inside.

News10NBC spoke with his mother, father and sister.

Barb Sullivan, Brian Sullivan's mother, said, “We always have hope, but when you hear a story like this, especially after these many years, it just gives you a little more hope than what you have. It just helps you.”

News10NBC's Ray Levato said, “Is there a tiny corner, perhaps of your emotions, where you feel that maybe he's not alive?”

Sullivan said, “We have those feelings that Brian is not with us because if he is with us, either he's being held or he's not himself because he wouldn't leave us like this and make us wonder every day.”

News10NBC spoke with Dawn Drexel, Brittanee's mother. Brittanee vanished four years ago and was last seen at a hotel during Spring Break in Myrtle Beach. Dawn Drexel provided an artist's rendering of what Brittanee might look like today.

Dawn Drexel, Brittanee Drexel's mother, said, “We've kept hope. We believe that Brittanee may yet be out there somewhere. Just the support alone keeps me going. I can't say that it angers me that my daughter is not found because she will be. Somebody needs to start speaking up because I know that people here know something about my daughter. And that little tiny bit of information can break Brittanee's case wide open.”

Levato said, “Who do you think knows something?”

Drexel said, “I believe the kids that were down there with her know what happened to Brittanee.”

A week ago, Brittanee's friends and family members held a candlelight vigil at Charlotte Beach. Her mother was at a similar event in South Carolina.