Sister of Brittanee Drexel: ‘I know she’s always with me’

CHILI, N.Y. (WHEC) — The disappearance of a Chili teen on spring break launched a massive search spanning nearly a decade. Thursday marks 10 years since Brittanee Drexel was last seen.

News10NBC sat down with her younger sister, Myrissa Drexel, who was only 11 years old when she picked up the phone on April 25, 2009.

It was her sister’s boyfriend, sounding panicked and asking to talk to her mom.

“He sounded really…anxious, scared. He said ‘I need to talk to your mom, now.’ And then…the next thing you know, there’s a cop showing up at the house” recalled Myrissa.

At the time, her mom didn’t know her sister Brittanee was in Myrtle Beach; the Chili teen told her she was staying at a friend’s house.

After that fateful phone call, Myrissa went to stay with her dad while her mom immediately went to Myrtle Beach to search for her missing daughter. Initially, they tried to shield her younger sister from the news that Brittanee was missing.

Myrissa remembers talking to her sister on the phone the morning she disappeared.

“I spoke to her and I said, ‘I miss you, you haven’t been home in a couple days,’ she said, ‘I’ll see you tomorrow,’ and I said, ‘ok, I love you.’ I made sure I said I love you,” explained Myrissa.

It was the last time she would speak with her sister.

“There was a time I didn’t know how to deal with the loss of my sister…I’d sit there and think, ‘is she going to pop in the door? Will my parents get a phone call saying they found her?’” Myrissa said, adding that as the years passed, that hope turned into frustration.

“Why couldn’t the cops have done more? Were there things we were missing?” she asked, her family continuing to fight for answers.

“Not knowing what happened to someone, not having a body, not having a peaceful memory, nothing. Knowing at least what happened in the hours leading up to when she was murdered, not knowing that, having no information for your mind, heart, soul to rest and be healed…it’s frustrating, saddening…it’s horrible,” expressed Myrissa.

Growing up, she was incredibly close to her older sister.

“We would always be together. She’s always been my protector, my supporter, my role model,” said Myrissa.

She still considers her to be her protector; carrying an item with her at all times that reminds her of her sister, and naming her daughter’s middle name after Brittanee.

Myrissa said, “I know she’s always with me. 24/7 looking over me and my daughter.”